Here is my latest article for Integrated Catholic Life. It is a shorter version of an article first published at National Catholic Register. It explores the need for Catholics to give sacrificially–not just because the church needs the money, but because we need to give in order to live!
During this season of Lent we stop and remind ourselves that almsgiving is one of the three expectations for a good Lent along with fasting and prayer. A request to give one’s money away is most painful because the request for alms is about far more than money.
Money itself is not the issue. It’s not money. It’s what money buys: security, prestige, power, control — and most of all power over oneself and one’s decisions. If we gave up our money we’d have to trust in God instead of our bank account, and that is the real test.
It is really quite simple. You cannot get into heaven if you worship some other God. You cannot serve God and money. This simplest of Sunday School lesson is somehow the one most difficult to understand. If you wish to get into heaven you will — sooner or later — have to overcome your love of money. You thought the priest was asking for money so he could have control over you. In fact, the good priest asks for your money not so he can have control over you, but so that your money will not have control over you. He does not ask for money to enslave you, but to set you free.
Go here to read the full article.