While we enjoyed the opportunity to be away with family, my brother and I are also happy to be home in our parishes with our spiritual families. Certainly there were many memories made, such as having a new baby with us this year - my older brother Patrick’s first child, a girl named Phoenix. I bet others with large families can appreciate that family time is so wonderful but so tiring! (Perhaps that is just the case for introverts like me.) How simple it is to have just a seminarian and a priest-student (Fr. William) once again.
One of the most difficult tests we face in life is the realization that we are unable to forgive someone who has wrong us. Jesus gave us an example of that attitude when he related the parable of the prodigal son who wasted his inheritance.
In a short response to the question, “How was mission week this year”, which I have been asked plenty of times, I would say ‘It was a great and empowering experience’. This response is true in so many ways. I was really able to give back to my community and meet the people in our community that help South Bend in so many ways.
Pilgrimage is a beautiful opportunity for God to move.
It is interesting to think that Jesus, Mary, and Joseph went on pilgrimage often. They would have traveled three times each year for the Jewish festivals in Jerusalem. Jesus was lost in the temple on one of these pilgrimages. In fact, Jesus was born on a pilgrimage of sorts (or rather a long journey): Joseph took Mary to his hometown of Bethlehem for the census required by Caesar Augustus when Our Lord was born.
All human beings are made up of a material part, that is the body, and a spiritual part, that is the soul.
Both our body and our soul have a series of needs. We attend the needs of the body more frequently and quickly, and often leave aside the needs of the soul. When this happens, we experience a void in our lives.
It is important to know how to attend to our full identity by giving the soul the importance it deserves.
“The priesthood is the love of the heart of Jesus.” These words by Saint John-Marie Vianney, the patron of all priests, confirms in me that Fr. John Eze is a very good priest. I’m sure you enjoyed his presence this weekend as he shared about his home diocese for the annual mission appeal. This annual practice gives us a chance to participate in the missionary work of the church. Indeed this is something that was always close to our patroness’ heart, and our sharing in that mission is a way of living out the charism of our parish.
This past week I was able to participate in VBS at St Jude’s Parish. The theme of the week was; “when everything goes wrong...God is good.” A reminder that God is with us always even in the midst of trials. Every day we had a different bible story. The first day, the kids read about the Israelites and how they were enslaved for more than 400 years by the Egyptians. I had a group of about 20 kids and we built blocks of clay, we built a mini pyramid. The kids really enjoyed this activity. The second day was about the ten plagues of Egypt. I got to play Pharaoh.