Our pastor did not say the 11 am Mass that I attend. Instead our former administrator, a retired priest who filled in while we were between pastors, said Mass. I like him very much. He had a “bad” reputation in the parish he was in and for the life of me I cannot figure out why. We live in a small city and everybody knows everybody. It seems to me what they didn’t like was he is blunt. And so, he was today. He reminded us that sin is real and we need to get rid of our habits that get in the way of our relationship with Christ. He spoke in a warm, real, folksy way as he always does. He makes you think but at the same time you feel understood, loved, affirmed. He does talk too long but it gave me time to reflect on my own shortcomings. I also realized that the “doing” I talked about last week was only a partial plan. I think I also have to “do” in the reform area. I have to get rid of some bad habits – negative ways of thinking, sinful behavior I am stubborn about, in denial about. So, my plan must take this into account. So, some of the themes from my Lenten journey must reappear here.
I am looking forward to the Year of Faith. It will be a wonderful personal pilgrimage. I hope that it is a wonderful family and community pilgrimage. I will learn more and hopefully, I will emerge with a stronger faith and relationship with the Lord.
I am also thinking about my old blog – Time to Heal. I prayed for priests and victims of sexual abuse. They are never far my mind. Today, I felt the need to “report” on Father Tom. I fail to appreciate the dedicated, thoughtful, suffering souls who remain in the priesthood and who serve faithfully, even with holiness. I may incorporate prayers for priests and vocations into my daily or weekly journey. I am planning on writing every Sunday but maybe, I’ll write during the week too. I’ll see. There is only so much time and energy.
Finally, I am thinking of my deceased Aunt tonight. If anyone out there does read this – say a prayer for her. She died many years ago and although I am named after her, I don’t feel that I have paid enough attention to her and for some reason, she is on my mind tonight. Perhaps my cousins need help, who knows but in your kindness, a prayer for her is appreciated.