Look around you. Do you see God? Do you see Jesus Christ? In a real sense you do. You see them through the Holy Spirit who is in yourself and every baptized person around you. You can feel the Trinity’s presence in every kind word and good deed you’ll experience today. In just a few moments, you will be asked to share a sign of peace. Jesus said, “You are in me and I am in you.” Feel this presence as you wish the people around you peace.
Nine months ago, when I came to this parish, I was in a difficult point on my journey to become a Deacon. Several years ago, our parish was closed. A community that my family had belonged to for 30 years ceased to exist overnight. Because of the deaconate program, we haven’t joined a new parish and so never formed a new spiritual bond like we had at our old parish. Within a few weeks of our church closing Carol lost a dear friend to cancer. I remember her coming to me in the field where I was working. She was devastated; not only had she lost someone special toher, but she felt that the place she needed to be to talk with God was gone; the people she would have gone to for support were dispersed. We prayed and held each other, and in looking back I can see the Holy Trinity with us in the middle of that hay field. They strengthened us and we moved on. These events that happened at the beginning of my formation, I believe, had a lasting effect on my feelings about community.
I felt that it would be difficult if not impossible to ever have that spiritual communal closeness again. I learned over time that though our sacred buildings are important to us, more important are the communities they house. The trinity is in the community not the building; the trinity exists in the human heart not in stone and mortar. In this turbulent time in our Church so many of us lose sight of this, placing stone and mortar above flesh and blood. This was my mindset when I entered this community last November.
Coming to St.Kateri healed this misconception; I felt almost at once welcome. A building does not do that; a caring community does. I saw over the last several months two communities not dissolved by merger, but rather two communities coming together, blending and forming a new, stronger and more beautiful spiritual community. A new community strong enough to withstand a major crisis, rally together and move forward with Christ’s help. God sent me here to witness this; to give me back the feeling that I once had so many years ago. In a real sense, the Holy Spirit has been breathed in to me anew.
I will be going now to put my ministry to work. I’m going forward with renewed hope and promise given back to me by a strong and loving parish called St.Kateri, a parish that will prosper and grow with the guidance of the Father, The Son and the Holy Spirit.