With the approach of this year’s Living and Giving in Christ, Unity Through Diocesan Ministries appeal, I am naturally thinking of my former Archbishop in Indianapolis. Now retired, Archbishop Buechlein, OSB taught me much about stewardship and the need to financially support the works and ministries of the broader Church. I would like to share with you and excerpt from his book, Surprised by Grace: Memories And Reflections After 25 Years of Episcopal Ministry. (pp. 26-28)
First, make the connection between work during the week and Sunday. Diligence in work is good stewardship. Ethical practice is good stewardship of work. Work is a way of responding to God’s gifts with our God-given talents. If you are disabled by sickness, as I am now, see that as a work of holiness. An intentional awareness of the stewardship of work is a major way in which we can become holy.
Bring your week’s work and the fruits of your work as a spiritual offering to the Lord at Sunday Mass. The connection with Sunday Eucharist integrates Christian stewardship of time, talent and treasure with the offering of the Eucharist.
Work is a stewardship offering at Mass on Sunday. What we put in the Sunday offertory collection is an external sharing of the fruit of our daily stewardship of work. The workweek and Sunday are connected.
Secondly, try to seek a right balance of “family love” and “family wealth.” Your work or profession is, of course, a significant way in which you exercise your responsibility to provide for your family; or if you are single, it is a way to exercise your responsibility for the welfare of the local community of extended family and friends.
Thirdly, try to practice presence of God in your workday life.
Fourthly, try not to overlook the needy around you.0