Practicing works...what do I do?


#1

I find that I need to start doing more "works" as I have faith and prayer but not works. Unfortunately I am not totally sure what to do.

I like music and choir and my friend has been bugging me to join her choir since they need basses. This could work for me...I'm just curious if this counts as a "work".

The other things I am interested in are babies and helping the homeless. I heard from my mom that certain hospitals hire volunteers to play with babies that are in the ICU (who otherwise wouldn't have much human contact). If this type of thing exists I'd love to give it a try. I also like helping the homeless but still feel uncomfortable about this.

What other ideas do people have? I like teaching, theology, music, and exploring...not sure how these might be put to use. I also have a talent for writing and computers.

[EDIT] Actually one that very much appeals to me is the baby cuddling (found an official name for it). I'd still appreciate suggestions though!


#2

All of these things sound wonderful.

St Therese of Liseaux wrote that we should do "little things with great Love". So it is not the "works" that are pleaseing to God but the "Love" with which they are done. Work on this facet and soon everything you do in your daily life will become, "a work of charity", for it will be done for the Love of God and Neighbor, and God will lead you into those works He has planned for you.

Pease
James


#3

Start with your family and use the Little Flower as a guide. Be attentive to your family’s needs. You needn’t sacrifice every waking momment but I’m sure there are many things around the house that need attention.

I’m assuming you are young. Call your grandparents once a week. Remember their birthdays on your own. Sit down and get their life stories before they pass. It is important for older people to know someone was interested in their existence.

Shovel your neighbor’s walk without being asked. Take an interest in the younger members of your family. Make a batch of cookies together.


#4

Prison Ministry

Extraordinary Minister of Holy Communion

Sponser a catechumen

soup kitchen

visit nursing homes

volunteer to help with the church grounds

Adoration

Call your parish and ask them what volunteers they need and do it.

Your a guy join the KOC? Your a gal join the Legion of Mary.

Do a bible study or catechism class


#5

If you have a dog, see if you can take it to visit the elderly at nursing homes.


#6

[quote="Norseman82, post:5, topic:190471"]
If you have a dog, see if you can take it to visit the elderly at nursing homes.

[/quote]

Careful this now usually requires Good Dog Certification...and that can be a pain to get


#7

[quote="ElizabethPH, post:4, topic:190471"]
Prison Ministry

Extraordinary Minister of Holy Communion

Sponser a catechumen

soup kitchen

visit nursing homes

volunteer to help with the church grounds

Adoration

Call your parish and ask them what volunteers they need and do it.

Your a guy join the KOC? Your a gal join the Legion of Mary.

Do a bible study or catechism class

[/quote]

If you're a guy....have you considered perhaps that you might be called to serve the Lord as a permanent deacon?


#8

Absolutely, choir counts as "works!" Just because it's something some consider "fun" doesn't make it any less of a work, esp. considering the amount of time and dedication it takes to participate. In most parishes where I have served, the choir sang for Sunday Mass each week, plus all of the holy days, plus rehearsals every Wed. or Thurs. night except during summer recess. It's a big commitment, but it will bring you many blessings if you truly enjoy singing and are willing to put in that much time. :thumbsup:

God bless!


#9

Of course singing in the choir counts as a work. You are using one of the talents God gives you in a way that is pleasing to him to help others. I guess that is what you have trouble seeing. Think of it this way, if everyone hid their voice under a barrel (think of the song…this little light of mine), then there wouldn’t be a choir. And, I don’t know about your church, but at my church, when there is a choir singing, more people have a tendancy to sing along because that way the choir will drown out their voice.

As for other works, I agree with what some have said on calling your parish. If you want to minister to the homeless, but it makes you nervous, why not volunteer to put baskets together for the Saint Vincent de Paul society? That way, you are still helping out with a vital piece of the puzzle, but without the “upfrontness” of working in a soup kitchen or shelter.


#10

[quote="elibrown627, post:9, topic:190471"]
Of course singing in the choir counts as a work. You are using one of the talents God gives you in a way that is pleasing to him to help others. I guess that is what you have trouble seeing. Think of it this way, if everyone hid their voice under a barrel (think of the song...this little light of mine), then there wouldn't be a choir. And, I don't know about your church, but at my church, when there is a choir singing, more people have a tendancy to sing along because that way the choir will drown out their voice.

As for other works, I agree with what some have said on calling your parish. If you want to minister to the homeless, but it makes you nervous, why not volunteer to put baskets together for the Saint Vincent de Paul society? That way, you are still helping out with a vital piece of the puzzle, but without the "upfrontness" of working in a soup kitchen or shelter.

[/quote]

The suggestion on homeless shelters might work. I also emailed a local hospital about the baby cuddling because I think I'd like that a lot.


#11

Luke 18:9-14 (The worker and the beggar)

9 And He also told this parable to some people who trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and viewed others with contempt: 10 "Two men went up into the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. 11 "The Pharisee stood and was praying this to himself: ‘God, I thank You that I am not like other people: swindlers, unjust, adulterers, or even like this tax collector. 12 'I fast twice a week; I pay tithes of all that I get.’ 13 **"But **the tax collector, standing some distance away, was even unwilling to lift up his eyes to heaven, but was beating his breast, saying, ‘**God, be merciful to me, the sinner!’ **14 “I tell you, this man went to his house justified rather than the other; for everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, but he who humbles himself will be exalted.”

The humble knows that God is doing the work of righteousness through the believer and is amazed that God would even use such a sinful creature; whereas the other says, what can I do for God that pleases him. Which is the humble and which is pride?


#12

continued from prev post
Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit. 5 And there are varieties of ministries, and the same Lord. 6 There are varieties of effects, but **the same God who works all things in all {persons.} *7 But to each one is given the *manifestation of the Spirit *for the common good. 8 For to one is given the word of wisdom *through the Spirit, and to another the word of knowledge ***according to the same Spirit; 9 to another faith *by the same Spirit,** and to another gifts of healing by the one Spirit, 10 and to another the effecting of miracles, and to another prophecy, and to another the distinguishing of spirits, to another {various} kinds of tongues, and to another the interpretation of tongues. 11 **But one and the same Spirit works all these things, distributing to each one individually just as He wills. **

The humble persons recognizes it is the work of the spirit working in and through through the human vessel; the person of pride does not.


#13

I’m kinda confused here…I don’t see anything wrong with a mentality of “what can I do that pleases God?” since the person here is genuinely trying to do what God finds most pleasing and acceptable. To do the first thing the person has to begin by doing the second.


#14

[quote="LotusCarsLtd, post:13, topic:190471"]
I'm kinda confused here...I don't see anything wrong with a mentality of "what can I do that pleases God?" since the person here is genuinely trying to do what God finds most pleasing and acceptable. To do the first thing the person has to begin by doing the second.

[/quote]

What can one do that pleases God? What does the Scripture say? I have a personal ministry, which I rarely speak about and is a neighborhood outreach based on the premise that the gospel or good news is predicated on the bad news of rejecting Jesus. Before I was a Christian I would have never even thought of such a thing; I am amazed that God would use me and to first even come up with such an idea and two provide me with the resources to carry it out. It is not me; it is God working in and through me for His purpose.

Another example; when i bought a lawn tractor for the yard; it was expensive and my yard is not that big, but I have some physical issues that the tractor reliefs; I prayed about the purchase and just asked God that He would use me and the tractor in some way to give glory to His name and let the love of Christ shine through me. It did not take Him long to answer that prayer. I did not say God, what can I do with this tractor that will please you; i already know the answer to that? Nothing. Why, because I am saying to Him that 1) He needs to be pleased by me and 2) I can actually please Him on my own...He doesn't need me to please Him He is perfectly pleased already.

I understand what you are saying and on the surface there is nothing wrong with wanting to please God; it should be our life's desire, but not based on our own ability to please Him, but based on the desire that He would please Himself by using us as the vessel.

What is the difference; one assumes a degree of pride "I can please God" and the other does not.

Ultimately it is the hearts intent and it sounds as though the heart is in the right place; but if the intent is to please God in the hopes of gaining some favor, then the intent is focused on self and not on God.


#15

[quote="aicirt, post:3, topic:190471"]
Start with your family and use the Little Flower as a guide. Be attentive to your family's needs. You needn't sacrifice every waking momment but I'm sure there are many things around the house that need attention.

I'm assuming you are young. Call your grandparents once a week. Remember their birthdays on your own. Sit down and get their life stories before they pass. It is important for older people to know someone was interested in their existence.

Shovel your neighbor's walk without being asked. Take an interest in the younger members of your family. Make a batch of cookies together.

[/quote]

:thumbsup:

Today, I'm feeling run down and weary. It would be wonderful if someone, like my childless brother, would offer a helping hand. But, he's busy rescuing dogs and taking pledges for his charity run. Sometimes, your ministry is as close as your nephews and nieces or siblings or another relative.


#16

Today, I'm feeling run down and weary. It would be wonderful if someone, like my childless brother, would offer a helping hand. But, he's busy rescuing dogs and taking pledges for his charity run. Sometimes, your ministry is as close as your nephews and nieces or siblings or another relative.


I was going o say just this. Don't feel you have to go out and do something grand, look right in front of you to family and neighbors. Those are the people we need to help first. Imagine if everyone did that??!! I mean wow, the burden on social service agencies and charities could be drastically reduced. Mother Teresa said something i always try to remember....."do what's in front of you", which is especially important to remember when you don't know what to do first. I need to take this very advice, today:o:blush:

And don't forget the most powerful work of all, prayer!


#17

I was going o say just this. Don’t feel you have to go out and do something grand, look right in front of you to family and neighbors. Those are the people we need to help first. Imagine if everyone did that!!! I mean wow, the burden on social service agencies and charities could be drastically reduced. Mother Teresa said something i always try to remember…“do what’s in front of you”, which is especially important to remember when you don’t know what to do first. I need to take this very advice, today:o:blush:. . . .
[/quote]

EXACTLY - learn the ‘responsibilities of the present moment’ for your particular ‘state in life’, and fulfill them with with great love, charity, and humility - FIRST!!!

For example, a ‘parent’ (father or mother) should ‘take care of their children and spouse’ first (immediate family)- rather than ‘abandoning them’ to go do some charitable or even evangelizing work while the children/spouse ‘suffer’ at their absence.

Un-married’s have a little more flexibility, but should still consider their extended families needs (parents, grandparents, etc).

Do you have a local Catholic Elementary school nearby? They can always use an extra hand . . .


#18

Yep, and you don't even have to be close!

My grandma and I exchange hand-written letters. She LOVES them passionatly. Since then I've expanded my letter-writing to old college roommates, my uncle, aunt and little cousins in other states, even friends I have now that I only get to see once a month or so.

Though me and the USPS have to talk! Stamps are expensive!!!!:p


closed #19

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.