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Wednesday, June 22, 2011

What do we do?

Inevitably people will ask us the question, "What do you do?" This is a very easy and simple way to understand who we are and what kind of approach we have to living the Catholic faith. Even the Lord himself tells us that you may know a cause by its effect: "By their fruits you shall know them" (Mt 7:16).

During the Church's history God has raised up different men and women to carry out a particular work of Christ necessary for the needs of that age. The Apostolic Fathers had the charge to plant the seeds of the Church in the nations by missionary preaching and founding of Churches. The Church Fathers catechized the mystogogical gift of laying a foundational explanation of the faith. The Desert Fathers shined forth the heremetical and ascetical work of Christ with a life of prayer and penance. The Benedictines and Monastics gave the Church the ora et labora of Christ, the prayer and work of Christ, to transform western culture, elevating it and giving society stability. The medieval communities elevated and transformed culture, christianizing all things through the lens of God, giving birth to the modern scientific method, universities, and the investigation of the world around us. The mendicant orders of Franciscans and Dominicans brought about a witness of radical poverty and preaching to purify the Church and bring about a deeper conversion. The Jesuits, Carmelites, Ursulines, Theatines and others fueled the counter reformation and brought about healing in the midst of the wounds of the protestant reformation. The new and vibrant missionary societies preached the Gospel on different continents and in a few short generations founded new Churches in Africa, Asia, and the Americas. The congregations of charitable works reached out amidst a time industrialization and great upheaval and started schools, hospitals, chaplaincies at prisons, homes for the poor and dying, and more.

In our age there is a terrible breakdown and attack on the family through contraception, abortion, divorce, same-sex unions, all kinds of abuses and neglect of children, invitro fertilization, embryonic stem cell research, human cloning - the list goes on. The solution or medicine to these problems is communion, the gift of relationships in the Church to bring about the healing of families and of nations. This is the SOLT work in one word: communion. We do all things in oneness with an ecclesial family, called an "ecclesial team" where we shine forth a new kind of family, or communion of vocations, nationalities, ages, experiences, and personalities. So that when people look at us they may see a kind of icon of the Blessed Trinity, a communion of persons in charity - one family yet diverse members.

Ok, but you may still be asking, "What do you do?" How we determine a particular work or apostolate in a local diocese is also a witness to communion, the communion that is the structure of the Church itself - hierarchical communion with our bishops, or what we like to call, "obedience of relationships." Fr James Flanagan puts it this way, we ask the bishop, "What is on your heart for your people?' The answer to that question is the kind of work we do in that diocese.

You can know that in our times there is also the break down of ecclesiastical communion with the bishops through disobedience, dissent, heresy, schism, and a general spirit of egotistical individualism. By our familial and filial love for our bishops, we hope to bring about healing in the Church and shine forth the communion of the Trinity. Who is the bishop to us? He is our spiritual father, the spiritual director of our apostolate, whose direction and guidance we seek in living our apostolate well.

Here are some examples of what we do based on our communion with the local bishop:

-Serving American Indian Nations in North Dakota and Wyoming

-Drug addiction rehabilitation in Thailand

-Orphanage in Mexico

-Serving the poor and healing of social life in Haiti

-Education of the Youth through Schools and the Evangelization of Culture in Belize through modern media apostolate both in urban and rural areas

-Teaching of little children in Montessori schools in Kansas

-Tribal reconciliation in Papua New Guinea

-Serving in Remote areas in the Philippine Island missions

-Formation of Priests in the Philippines

-Retreat Ministry in Corpus Christi, TX

-Migrant Ministry in Macau, China

-Serving the remote villages of Guatemala

-Parish Ministry in:

England and Wales
Vignola, Italy
Nuevo Laredo, Mexico
Seatle, Washington
Sydney, Australia
Phoenix, Arizona
Robstown, Texas
And more

To find out more, Contact Us.