Skip to main content

Pearls from a Lenten Parish Mission

Last night was the final night of our parish mission that featured Fr. Bill Garrott, O.P. Fr. Garrott certainly lived up to the Dominican charism as the order of preachers. He combined engaging stories and reflections with musical performances without ever being saccharine or trite. The substance of his message was straightforward without being oversimplified. Each night he focused on a different Person of the Holy Trinity. Rather than trying to recap all three nights, I thought I would share a few of the pearls.

First of all, a phrase that was explored in depth on the first night but repeated every night was, "God does not love you because you are good. God loves you because He is good." We cannot demand God's love because we have earned it. We gratefully receive God's love because He is merciful and loves us in spite of our persistent imperfections.

At the foot of the Cross, we can stand with the Blessed Virgin Mary and learn about love, learn about sin, learn about forgiveness, and learn about wisdom. The words on forgiveness were very poignant for me. Forgiveness is not a feeling. It is a willful decision. Once we make the decision to forgive, our feelings may or may not change at the same time. We can forgive, and still have feelings of sadness, hurt, and even anger. The conscious will to forgive will pull our feelings along toward healing, but it can take time. Just because the hurt remains, does not mean that I have failed at forgiveness. That was important for me to hear.

Finally, when we experience an intimate, personal relationship with Jesus Christ, we will be driven to share this with others. The Holy Spirit will give us the strength to do things we cannot imagine being able to do on our own. Trust this power. Participate in the New Evangelization and draw others to the Eucharist. Go forth and set the world on fire for Christ.


Popular posts from this blog

Parent Letter from a Catechist

I am going to be teaching seventh grade CCD this year. We do most of the preparation for confirmation during this year since Confirmation is usually scheduled for the fall of the eighth grade year.I have composed a letter to the parents to try and keep them active in their children's religious education. I thought I would post it here and get your feedback before I send it out in a couple of weeks.

I am privileged to be your child’s seventh grade CCD teacher for the 2006-2007 school year. This is a very important year. We will focus on your child’s preparation for confirmation. Of course, you have already been preparing your child for this sacrament for many years. You are the primary catechist for your child. You show how important your Faith is by making Mass attendance a top priority and by family prayer.

Confirmation is one of the Sacraments of Initiation. It is a beginning. It is not a graduation. This year we will work to solidify the foundation of your child’s Catholic Faith.…

Dispelling the Myth of the Travel Dispensation

One of the fun things about having a site meter on my blog is I can see which posts garner the most attention. I can also see how people find my blog. One of the most read posts from my two years of blogging is this one that discusses finding Mass while traveling. I would like to think this post is so popular because it is so well written. The truth of the matter is that it generates so much traffic because I use the words “travel dispensation for Mass”—as in “There is no such thing as a travel dispensation for Mass.” I would guess that nearly a dozen times every week, someone googles “travel dispensation for Mass” and finds my blog. I wonder how many of these folks are poor souls trying to assuage their Catholic guilt with evidence of a justification for missing Mass while on the road.

I know that when I tell my seventh grade CCD students that attending Mass every Sunday is a commandment (one of the top ten!) and not just a pretty good idea they are amazed. Missing Mass has become so …

United Breaks Guitars

This guy is really talented and what a creative way to get your message across. I think he captured the "indifferent employee" perfectly. They don't just work for airlines. I think I ran into them at Walmart on Friday!