Statistics indicate that only about 25% of college students will still be practicing their faith by the time they graduate. Brian Kissinger hoped that the graduated seniors at Steubenville this weekend will help increase that statistic.
Parable of the Sower – Which Seed Are You?
Drawing on the parable of the sower and the seed (Matthew 13:3-9), Brian opened a conversation with the teens about the different types of soil. The seed that falls on the path are like friends who are just not interested, despite our attempts to share our faith with them. The seed that falls on the rocky ground are like those who attend a retreat or conference and are on fire with the faith at Mass on Sunday morning; however, a week or two later, they are lackadaisical about going to Mass. The seed that falls among thorns is like the distractions and sins which seek to tear us away from Christ.
Brian encouraged the youth, however, that they could be like the seed that was multiplied a hundred fold. To stay rooted, however, requires vigilance as St. Peter exhorts: “Be sober and vigilant. Your opponent is prowling around like a roaring lion looking for [someone] to devour.” (1 Peter 5:8) . Brian identified five key battlegrounds for college students: purity, sobriety, money, sanity, and faith. In order to remain rooted in the faith, we need to be comfortable with awkwardness. Sure, it may be awkward to have to leave a situation of temptation or impurity. Being awkward, however, is far better than sinning. He urged the teens to remember that God has a great plan for each and every one of them, far beyond the immediate temptations.
“Am I more willing to deal with awkwardness than fall into sin?”
“The devil only has as much power as you give him.”
“It’s easy to just slip into Mass every Sunday. The better gauge of your faith live is going to Confession regularly. That’s how we till our hearts and prepare it so that God’s Word can take root.”