Sunday, November 05, 2006

While We Have Time, Let Us Do Good

I'm going to put this graphic into my template someplace, soon. The phrase at the bottom has become a very familiar phrase around my parish in the past year or so. It was the pastor's favorite way to close his homilies and letters in the bulletin. I think it's a wonderful reminder. Don't wait! Do good things NOW!

For a while I had been thinking that since, as the pastor, Father Dan probably got more than his share of complaints, it was about time someone gave him a pat on the back. I'm glad that I did that, while I had time. I mailed him a card with my thanks in it, just a few weeks ago.

Today I found out that due to health problems, Father has resigned as our pastor and the Spiritual Assistant of our Secular Franciscan fraternity. He will be leaving soon. It's a great loss for our parish, since he had been instrumental in many changes, big and small, that were breathing life into the parish again. Right now we're under diocesan scrutiny as it is decided what parishes will close, or merge, or whatever. And now we are without a leader whose dedication, energy, and obvious faith were really necessary attributes in a time like this.

I appreciate Father Dan's advice and encouragement. I appreciate his candor. I appreciate his willingness to acknowledge that sin and evil exist, that we are always in danger of attack from the Devil, and that we can have the strength to overcome that. I appreciate the institution of weekly Evening Prayer, Benediction and Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament; the "Beauty of Our Faith" classes that were just beginning; the efforts to get the parish together for fun events as well as faith events. It was Father Dan who first encouraged me to use my pocket rosary.

While Father Dan was here, he did good. May God bless him with a return to good health. Please pray for him, and for our parish as we have no leader at a crucial time. His absence will be deeply felt.

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