Jesus the Good Shepherd Catholic Church in Monroe of the Diocese of Shreveport is a loving, nurturing family of faith and prayer with the Eucharist as the center of parish life. With diverse gifts, we proclaim God's healing love and presence in the world through the Word, worship and service.

Pastor's Corner
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Father David RichterJesus the Good Shepherd Church
Bulletin Letter for July 20, 2014

Dear Friends in Christ,
It was so good to see all the Good Shepherd families at the MAC to welcome Fr. Keith Garvin to our parish! It may have been hot, but it got cooler as the evening went on. Such a gathering is the kind of social we want to see – families getting to know each other, leading to families supporting each other and growing in solidarity as our particular portion of the people of God in north Monroe. 

Families are very much a high priority of Pope Francis. He has called for an Extraordinary Synod on Marriage and the Family which will be held several months from now. The bishops chosen to attend, speak, and offer encouragement to families through this synod (gathering of bishops) are even now seeking words and ideas that will prove a help for them. 

Before him, Pope John Paul II was known for saying that families are the way of the Church. The family is the “domestic church,” the “home church” that ought to be a school for love, responsibility, growth in maturity, joy, and learning to be a person of active charity to others. There are so many needs out there – but we can supply them if husband, wife, and children form themselves to be apostles in the world. 

Pope Frances has so many moments of candor that the Church and secular media can hardly capture them all. Read what he has said in a recent Mass for married couples. He is worried about a “culture of well-being,” in which bad advice is given by some, telling couples that
It’s better not to have children. It’s better. You can explore the world, go on holiday. ... It might be better – more comfortable – to have a dog, two cats,’ and the love goes to the two cats and the dog. ... Then, in the end, this marriage comes to old age in solitude, with the bitterness of loneliness. It is not fruitful; it does not do what Jesus does with his Church: He makes his Church fruitful. 

Sacrifice is a necessary part of human living. Meaning and purpose are placed within us by God. We are made the way we are for a reason. Trying to make God’s will our own will too is demanding, but it results in our fulfilling what marriage and family life are about. 

Take a look again at your family and home life. Ask the Lord to help you accomplish what He wants to see from you. He answers our prayer, but we have to ask them.

Fr. David T. Richter

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