LAST MONTH priests at Saint Clement all marked our anniversary of ordination. It is a joyous day, much as it is for a married couple. Anniversaries remind us of promises made and commitments kept. Couples see the imperfections of their mate and still love them. Priests see the imperfections of the Church and still love it. Marriage is the joining of two human people who seek to bring the divine into each other’s lives. In ordination, human priests are joined in a mystical union with God and His People. Like a marriage, there are ecstatic moments.
As a child I was often enamored with the moon. I was fascinated with its sheer brightness, magnitude and its distance. To my mind this strange celestial object contained all of the mysteries of life, and I longed for the day when someone who had visited the moon would be able to unravel all of its mysteries. It was only years later I would learn to my amazement that some people had actually landed on the moon. Human beings have always been intrigued by the unknown and what is beyond them. They have always longed to conquer the “mysterious.”
I don't care if you can name all seven gifts of the Holy Spirit,” I told the classroom of 8th grade students preparing for Confirmation. “I care very much if you can tell me what it would look like to show fortitude in a high school hallway when you see someone getting bullied. What does fortitude, which is one of the gifts of the Holy Spirit, concretely look like?"
I am a cradle Catholic; baptized and raised in the Church and proud attender of 16 years of Catholic school, if you count the three years of Jesuit law school. In all that time, I was never once asked to “evangelize.” I first heard the word from our former pastor Fr.
What do you value? What is valuable to you? Take a moment and think about that—make a mental list. I imagine that our lists would vary in some ways, and in others be similar. For example, we might compare our valuables and find that one list has a lot of things on it, a lot of tangible “stuff”—the stuff of Life. Another list might include things tangible, like people—loved ones, family, co-workers—and less tangible, like relationships, feelings, belonging. Maybe your list includes the conceptual: freedom, integrity, compassion, purpose, resolve, vulnerability.
On a gorgeous, sunny Saturday afternoon, 400 parishioners took part in the 13th annual Clement Service Day. From the minute volunteers arrived, the spirit and energy of April 28th was palpable. Due to the large number of participants, we were able to send 23 teams to 22 different sites across the city, from churches and schools in need, to homeless shelters, intergenerational homes and more. Service projects ranged from landscaping to painting to furniture assembly, bus cleaning, meal preparation and serving, and much more.
WHEN GOD’S MESSENGERS in the Old Covenant and the New wanted to explain the ways of the Lord to people, they looked around for objects and events familiar to them. Among the most familiar were the plants they lived with day by day and year after year. From the everyday experiences of sowing, plowing, watering, reaping, and storing the biblical authors created metaphors to explain the unseen realities of the spiritual realm.
As a part of this year's Service Day, we will be collecting clothing through 11:00 a.m. this Saturday, April 28. Donations benefit various social service agencies throughout the city.
Needed items include:
- men, women (regular & maternity), and children/newborn clothing in good condition
We are in particular need of: