A word that is often used to correct a mistaken way of thinking is “providentialism”. Throughout history, this word has found itself in any number of circumstances, from the darkness of the Middle ages to the darkness of our present moment.
Basically, it has to do with a misunderstanding of Divine Providence. There are tragic situations where it seems easy to say, “it is God’s will”, “if it happens it is because that was the will of God”. What these statements declare is that God is the author of all the bad that happens and that persons are just puppets of God. This is not God!
“Providentialism” is a way of naming this mistaken way of thinking. It is not God’s will that a person be a drug addict. It is God’s will, his Divine Providence, that we live full and healthy lives, and not be passive victims. The will of God takes place by way of all those opportunities that are provided in order to heal and the perseverance in fighting against all the many circumstances that create the means for illness to prosper. God does not condemn persons to lives of incredible sadness. That is not our God! This way of thinking ends up denying the death and Resurrection of Christ. God does not desire suffering and death. God desires life, this is witnessed by the Resurrection of Christ. God takes all suffering and death and makes them his own, and by making them his own, he transforms them into more life. Just ask an alcoholic in recuperation; he will profess that in his own death came new life.
In the midst of all of this is to also be found the pandemic. God does not want the illness, he desires life – we have to care for one another, we need to be vaccinated. Also, here is where we find our financial situation. It is painful to say, but we need to help one another a bit more. I do not waver in saying that God does not want us to sink, and it is not a matter of shrugging it all off with the thought that “all we need is faith and then see what God will do”. To have faith is to exercise the helping of one another. These are the facts:
Monthly average Income: $69,000.00
Monthly, average expenses: $86,000.00
Since the beginning of the pandemic, when our income fell by 50%, we have been in the red.
Please, we are not asking you to harm your families. There is already immense gratitude for all your contributions and sacrifices. The desire is to increase donations by 20% so that we might balance income and expenses. And, please, continue to make your contributions to the pledges you made towards the construction of the new church. The monthly expense for the new church debt is $26,000.00.
Many thanks, God will provide the recompense for all your sacrifices.
Father Francisco Gómez, S.T