If we were sharing a cup of coffee, I would tell you that my wife and I are on Cape Cod this weekend. We are visiting her parents, and celebrating Father’s Day. The weather is beautiful; cool sea breezes, blue skies and bright sunlight. It is a nice break, a nice change of scenery for a bit. And it is a little respite from the feelings that I still have concerning the tragedy in Orlando, FL My in-laws do not have their TV on much, so I have been out of touch with the world. It is a nice break, but only a temporary one. We still have to reflect on, pray over, and act on the events of that terrible night.
Over a cup of coffee, I would tell you that since last we met, I, as a deacon, baptized two little girls into the Catholic Christian faith. One was a relative newborn, the other was a toddler. I preached a short homily, telling the assembled families and friends that we were about to witness something awesome! The power of the Holy Spirit was going to be at work before us. Through the waters of Baptism, they were brought into the Mystical Body of Christ. And their lives will be forever changed. And the lives of their parents are forever changed, for they have made a commitment to the Church to bring their children up in the Faith. I tell them that fulfilling that promise means something more than just seeing to it that their child goes to religious education classes. It means that they must show how the Faith is lived, by the example of their own lives; both the struggles and the joys. They are in my prayers.
Over a cup of coffee, I would tell that many years ago, when I was a young seminarian, I spent a couple of summers in an ecumenical program, called A Christian Ministry in the National Parks. They recruited seminary and college students from all Christian denominations; to go out to various national parks, and lead Sunday worship services for park visitors and employees. We seminarians were called Student Ministers. Those of us who were Catholic, would either assist a visiting priest at Mass, or lead a Service of the Word. I had my first experiences of preaching before people back then. Some of usalso organized Bible study groups, or organized choral singing groups. We earned our keep by working for the park concessionaires; I found myself working in some kitchens in Yellowstone National Park. Recently I signed up to become a ACMNP Prayer Partner for someone who will be going to a park in Alaska. Daily, I remember this young man in my prayers; praying for his safety, and success in his ministry.
Well, the coffee cup is empty, I wish you all wellness and blessings, and hope to see you again over a hot cuppa joe.