Time, talent and treasure is the catchphrase for stewardship in the Catholic Church. Each has a distinct focus, but blended together they allow us to live balanced, well rounded Christian lives.
Time is time given to God: in worship at church and prayer at home. It includes reading the Bible and other books which enhance our faith and understanding of our God, his Church and our response to God’s grace. While praying in the Garden of Gethsemane, Jesus asked Peter; “Could you not keep watch one hour with me?” Christ did not want Peter and the others to do anything as much as he wanted their time and attention.
Talent is work given to God’s Church. The focus here is not so much the time it takes as the action given to the well-being of the community. It is offering a sacrifice to God. Though the word talent is used, quite often what needs to be done requires little skill or ability.
Treasure is our “tithe,” a percentage of our income offered to assist the needs of the Church and it’s mission. This tends to make a little more sacred the otherwise secular jobs we may have. We convert our labors into the work of living and spreading the Gospel.
These are nothing new but are directly related to the prerequists the church established long ago for one to be considered a practicing Catholic; these are called the Precepts of the Church.
1. To participate in Mass each Sunday and on holy days of obligation.
2. To fast and abstain on days designated by the Church.
3. To confess one's sins at least once a year.
4. To receive Holy Communion during Easter time.
5. To contribute to the support of the Church.
6. To observe the laws of the church concerning marriage.
7. To join in the missionary spirit and apostolate of the Church.
These precepts are found in the Catechism of the Catholic Church (paragraph #2042).
Numbers 1 - 4, plus 6 involve giving ourselves to God in the form of our time.
Number 7 represents our talent.
Number 5 is offering to God and His Church our treasure.