NOTE: Christ in Our Neighborhood is a parish-based program consisting of small groups that gather in the home weekly to discuss and pray through the upcoming Sunday Mass readings.

This coming Sunday, we celebrate the 12th Sunday in Ordinary Time. The question the Christ in Our Neighborhood reflection asks us is: How is Christ the center of your life, especially during personal hardships?

Despite what you see on most social media posts, life isn’t always a pretty picture. We go through valleys — tough times — and that’s when our faith gets tested. It’s easy to believe when things are going just the way we planned, right?

When we’re in the middle of the storms of this life, we can know and experience the love of God through His Word, the sacraments and in community.

God’s Word

How many of us start scrolling through our phones right after the alarm goes off in the morning? What would happen instead if the first thing we read each day was God’s Word? (Hint: There are lots of great apps that allow you to read the Bible and the daily Mass readings on your phone!)

By rooting ourselves in God’s Word before taking on anything else each day, we begin to see the world around us and our circumstances through the lens of Scripture. Take time to ponder the day’s Gospel and ask God, “What are You teaching me through this passage?”

The sacraments

God’s love, healing, mercy and strength come to us in the sacraments, particularly the Eucharist and Reconciliation. Living a life that is fueled by sacramental graces helps us carry our crosses with grace and grow in virtue.

When we’re hurting, we can turn to the love of God in the sacraments and experience His tender care.


Who do you call at midnight when a geyser bursts forth from your kitchen faucet? Yeah, that friend. The one who’s well-acquainted with the mess in your garage and your less-than-perfect life and loves you for it. The one you know from your small group at church that’s been meeting for months to discuss and pray over the Sunday Mass readings. Or, the person who’s been serving in ministry with you. Friends in Christ will be there for you to get you through the bigger messes in life! And, you’ll be the one they call when things get desperate, too.

Invite someone you know back to church today through Christ in Our Neighborhood! Small groups gather in the home to discuss and pray over the upcoming Sunday Mass readings. Everything you need for your group is in the weekly newsletter.

Sign up for the Christ in Our Neighborhood Newsletter here: