Tuesday, July 3, 2012

This is the end and the beginning

Sunday was our Pastor's last day with our parish. He's been reassigned to a nearby church who will greatly benefit from his humor, leadership, and faith guidance. While we will miss his homilies (they were really thought provoking), we look forward to the insights of the incoming pastor. Hearing the same readings interpreted differently invokes additional contemplation and, often, a new outlook.

But we'll definitely miss Fr. Ken. He's been present for the first Eucharist celebrations of our oldest three children, and he doused Irish Jig in Baptism. The premise of this blog is actually based on his homily from Easter 2011.

 May, 2012

 May, 2006

During his last homily, he reinforced the important stuff (his words), wanting to make sure we remembered our roles as Catholic Christians. In a world that is quick to decry religion, he asked that we:

Know God is real  - This sounds pedestrian, but it's huge.  This acknowledgment of His role changes the way you must think about your everyday and the choices you'll make.  No longer are you able to pretend that your life is all your own with no consequences for choices or actions.  You have to behave according to the beliefs of your faith, regardless of the current social arena. 

Believe life is sacred - The first thought when hearing this, of course, is that we are called to respect everyone one and every thing from natural conception to natural death.  But, the statement is greater than that.  You have to treat all people with respect, whether you want to or not.  There are no useless people, despite what your own prejudices tell you.  This simple statement also encompasses all of our environmental beliefs.  We are called to be good stewards of our resources, as well as to be conscience of the products we buy.  Where and how were they produced?  How can our little choices for fair trade or locally grown/ made change the big picture of life?

Bless one another often - We are called to step outside of ourselves more often.  What are the needs, emotions and vulnerabilities of those around us, related and not related to us?  As a society, we should be more empathetic.  Taking the time to say "Bless you" to your children, family, friends, and - yes - the occasional stranger will change how you see the world around you.

His last thoughts were to remind us that God is watching. "If you believe that," he said, "then at least be entertaining!"  We should remember to find joy in our everyday living.  Incorporating our beliefs and our calling into the everyday isn't a chore.  It's a blessing to have Him rejoicing with us.

Encouraging his sister to sing to the lions at the National Zoo!

 Decorating Classic Rock's birthday gift!

Entertaining everyone at the Botanical Gardens with their laughter!

Good luck Fr. Ken. And bless you!

Today's post title from: The End and The Beginning by Matt Maher

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I thank you for visiting with me and for sharing your thoughts. I hope your day is fabulous and that you make some time for music - no matter what kind!