Sacred Heart Church

Twenty-Third Sunday in Ordinary Time

September 8, 2019


Lk 14:25-33 It is said that upon reading the Gospels, Gandhi commented that he very much liked Jesus Christ. It was Christ's followers he found troublesome. One wonders who Gandhi had met and if these Christians had truly counted the cost of their faith. Following Jesus, is much more challenging than we may think. He emphasizes this with strong language in this Sunday's Gospel. He compares discipleship to the carrying of one's own execution device - "his own cross" - and for the need even to "hate" what could disrupt one's commitment. Some of this is standard hyperbole, exaggeration for effect common to the time period. Some of this should make us wonder how deep our discipleship goes.

"Which of you wishing to construct a tower does not first sit down and calculate the cost?" Jesus imagines this construction project gone wrong. Someone may lay the foundation but not have enough resources to finish. We've received the firm foundation of the sacraments - our baptism, for one, along with weekly Mass attendance and regular confession. Yet how often do we find ourselves too distracted, exhausted, or uninterested to truly build our lives on our faith? We have all met such Christians. Some days, we may be those Christians ourselves. We become the incomplete tower that confuses and baffles the onlookers. "This one began to build but did not have the resources to finish!" For some of us, our cross may feel heavier than we expected upon the first lift. Building a tower means laying stone upon stone. It's a process. We don't arrive at completion overnight. Grace is always sufficient to provide the resources, but we need to keep saying yes to the task. This week, consider your own discipleship. What is one area where you've become distracted or discouraged? Let God lay another brick on the tower.
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"The victims of this throwaway culture are precisely the weakest and most fragile human beings-the unborn, the poorest, the sick and elderly, the seriously handicapped, etc-who are in danger of being thrown away, expelled from a system that must be efficient at all costs." Every person bears the face of Christ. They cannot be discarded.
- Homily in 2005 by Cardinal Bergoglio

Sacred Heart Parent/Candidate Meeting

Meeting for Confirmation Process for students in 9th, 10th, and 11th grade (this includes BG) is scheduled for Sunday, September 22, in the Formation Center from 11:00-11:50 a.m. Please call Judy Wahl at 944-3922 if you have any questions.

Sacred Heart Religious Education

Classes for grades preK-Kindergarten through 11th grade will begin on Catechetical Sunday, September 15 from 11:00-11:50. New student registration will be from 8:30-9:30 a.m. on Sunday September 15 in Sacred Heart Formation Center. Schedules will be posted on out parish website. Contact Judy Wahl 944-3922. Thank you.

Sacred Heart Religious Education

CCD Program is currently in need of Catechst's. We have an opening for 5th and 6th grade (combined class) catechist and 9th grade. Background clearances and completion of Diocesan Virtus training is necessary. Please contact Judy Wahl at 944-3922 for more information. Thank you.

Ministry Training

Have you or a family member ever considered becoming an Altar Server, Reader, or Extraordinary Minister of Holy Communion? If you or someone you know is in good standing with the Catholic Church and would like to be trained in any ministry, please call Mike Kelleher (814-934-4076) to set up a brief training session.


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 is essential for the common good.

Stewardship Reflections

Christian Stewards view their possessions as gifts that are meant to build God's kingdom here on earth. We are challenged to use our resources to reach out to others and build God's kingdom of love, justice and peace. We are urged to be intentional about our faith and not let habitual relationships or ways of living hold us back from being a faithful Christian.

Could any one of us renounce all our earthly possessions as a steward and disciple? How can we take steps towards living this vision? Look for ways to become more involved in your parish community.

In Your Prayers

Please remember in your prayers the health intention of Allan Bauer, Mark Blackie, Rod Baronner, Jack Chilcote, Brandon Conaway, Denise Conrad, James Conrad, Kathy Corl, Betty Dalansky, Joan Donnelly, Matt Dorman, Lois Duncan, Michael Faherty, Sarah Gil, Phyllis Hartman, Emily Hasan and unborn baby, Charles McGrain, Christomer Ruffing, Robert Ruffing, Tina Ruffing, Susan Sakerak, Brian Sherbine and Peggy Stauffer.

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 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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