From the Pastor's Pen - Lenten Things
The newspaper, Thursday last week—the day after Ash Wednesday, when the Parkland Fla. school shooting took place—showed a heartrending picture of distressed school mothers in each others’ arms, waiting to hear if their children were OK. On the forehead of one of them, the sign of ashes was prominent. This says it all. In Lent, we’re fixed on choosing what to “give up”.
But daily living—and our faith—doesn’t allow us just to choose what to suffer. We are in the hands of God; but we are also many times in the hands of others, sometimes careless or even evil. These mothers could only wait to hear about the lives of their children, and try to hope and cope. We typically don’t have such a drastic trial to endure. But Lent calls us, not just to an exercise of will power, but to trust in God amidst all that we endure; and to choose faith and charity in all times.
Many Scouting activities and awards always coincide with Lent. This year, our St. Rose Troop received the Archbishop’s Award Honor Unit; and also the Pope Paul VI National Quality Unit Award. These are very rare honors for troops. Adult leaders and scouts too received recognition: Terry Morris, Kim Nugen, Alice Morris and Tony Nugen, Ethan Nugen and Alex Dawson.
Today (Sunday) I return with a large group of ladies from the ACTS retreat. It’s been a joyful time, to be away reflecting on faith that lifts us up and gives power for living. The theme, from this Sunday’s Transfiguration gospel, is “Listen to Him”. Our Men hold a retreat in October.
I very much enjoyed delivering the first talk of our Wednesday night Evenings of Recollection, on (your!) Inner Treasure and how to live from it each day and each week. You can come to the concluding talk this Wednesday even if you didn’t make the first one. Starting March 7, we’ll join our sister congregations for 3 Wednesdays of ecumenical prayer and preaching.