Sacred Heart Church

Thirtieth Sunday in Ordinary Time

October 25, 2020


MT 22:34-40 For some reason, it is easier to genuflect in reverence to the presence of Christ in the tabernacle of a church, than to genuflect in reverence to the same presence of Christ in another person's soul. We wrongly believe that God divides himself, placing himself in one place in preference to another. It doesn't work that way. Love of God and love of neighbor are intimately and inseparably connected because the essence and spark of God's very presence is in all creation. God's presence is just as real in the one who is good, as in the one who is bad, and the one who is just, and the one who is unjust.

Our brains get in the way of truly contemplating the awesomeness of this truth. We like to separate things into boxes, the sheep from the goats and the deserving from the undeserving. But, with God there are no distinctions such as this. Our human classifications, subdivisions, and definitions hold no power or have any weight in God's eyes. Sadly, we relate to God and to each other as if they do.

We cannot be deaf to the world's pain. It is not about having, hoarding, accumulating, acquiring, securing, storing, protecting, owning, claiming, or any of the other human terms we use to distinguish mine from yours. We put so much power in these words and that power, even though we may not always realize it, can cause those words and the distinctions they carry to wound and hurt others. We have the whole order of things wrong, but we are so set on preserving this order that we are absolutely afraid to do it any other way. We go through hoops trying to convince ourselves why the perils of the person seeking a new place to call home are not our perils that we turn our back and justify closing our doors. It makes perfect sense to us. Yet, it makes no sense in terms of our faith. It doesn't square with any of the words found in Sacred Scripture or in any time -tested teaching of the church.

We have it all reversed. We know that we do because when Jesus speaks about such things and the words of the Old Testament prophets ring out again, we start to feel uncomfortable and anxious. What we do, directly or by omission, to one of the least of these little ones we do to God. It is quite possible that some of what we are doing personally, economically, politically, globally, and even religiously is doing more harm than good. Let's ponder that a bit.
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Concerning abortion and euthanasia: People of God have to elect public servants who know the difference between serving the public and killing the public, and that those who can't tell the difference don't belong in public office. Moral principles do not depend on a majority vote. Wrong is wrong, even if everybody is wrong. Right is right, even if nobody is right. Abortion is a taking of human life; it is wrong no matter what the circumstances.


We thank all parishioners of Sacred Heart and Saint Mary's for continuing to be supportive of the Church by mailing and dropping off at the rectory your weekly/monthly church contributions as well as donating cleaning, sanitizing supplies. Your generosity is deeply appreciated.

Stewardship Reflections

God does not actually need us to return anything to Him. It's all His anyway. It is we who need to return some portion of times, talent, and treasure as an act of love, of appreciation, of acknowledgment. Good stewardship is a beautifully spiritual act, and also dangerously contagious. We surely are affected.

When we see people in our parish leading by example of good stewardship, of not calling attention to their generosity, we are very likely to become "infected." The practice of good stewardship is enormously attractive and appealing. Does my stewardship each year reflect that I am also as faithful about giving "to God what belongs to God?"


We are always happy to welcome new parishioners to Sacred Heart Parish and Saint Mary Parish. Please introduce yourself to a member of the parish staff and register at the rectory. Registration, the practice of stewardship, and regular participation in the Eucharist indicate that a person is an active member of the parish and is eligible to act as a godparent or sponsor. As a church community seeking to be faith-filled disciples and good stewards, the sacrifice of our time, talent and treasure are essential for the common good.

In Your Prayers

Please remember the health intention of Allan Bauer, Mark Blackie, Rod Baronner, Jack Chilcote, Brandon Conaway, Shirley Conlon, Denise Conrad, James Conrad, Kathy Corl, Dan Costlow, Joan Donnelly, Matt Dorman, Amelia Doughurty, Lois Duncan, Trina Funcheon, Mary Hartsock, Phyllis Hartman, Elizabeth Hasan, Phyllis Hauser, Diane Horton, Carol Keagy, Beth Lloyd, Cindy Lytle, Jonathon Masood, Edmund McConnell, Elizabeth McConnell, Charles McGrain, Lori Moschat, Cierria Naglowsky, Maureen O'Rorke, Gail Pearson, Christoper Ruffing, Robert Ruffing, Susan Sakerak, Brian Sherbine, Peggy Stauffer, Ken Tromm

If you would like to add a sick or hospitalized person to our prayer list or re-add a person, please call the rectory office, at 943-8553. Parishioners of Saint Mary are encouraged and welcome to participate. Remember, you must have the permission of the ill person/family to publish their name.



Sacred Heart Parish | 511 20th Street | Altoona, PA 16602 | (814) 943-8553
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