Please take a moment to read Fr. Greg’s “Welcome to Phase 5!” letter – click here
The Weekend of June 12/13, 2021
June 13, 2021
Dear People of God,
Congratulations to the Class of 2021 from Francis Xavier Warde Grammar School!
The Class is truly a marvelous group of young people. They are kind, respectful, and the Class of 2021 has developed many fine leaders. We are proud of all of you!
I also extend congratulations to all our Holy Name Cathedral eighth graders, high school seniors and college graduates. Congratulations! We are proud of all of you!
Graduation speaks of endings – and new beginnings. New beginnings can be exciting, scary and an opportunity to open new doors. The key, however, is to walk with the Lord Jesus through all the doors we call life. The Spirit of God is with us.
All the graduates were once little boys and girls – and how quickly the days turn into years! And to all the young people – your parents were once your age! Life is a teacher and filled with wisdom. I share with you the following “Wisdom of the Ages.”
The only survivor of a shipwreck was washed up on a small, uninhabited island. He prayed feverishly for God to rescue him, and every day he scanned the horizon for help, but none seemed forthcoming.
Exhausted, he eventually managed to build a little hut out of driftwood to protect him from the elements, and to store his few possessions. But one day, after scavenging for food, he arrived home to find his little hut in flames, the smoke rolling up to the sky. The worst had happened – everything was lost. He was stunned with grief and anger. “God, how could you do this to me!” he cried.
Early the next day, however, he was awakened by the sound of a ship that was approaching the island. It had come to rescue him. “How did you know I was here?” asked the weary man of his rescuers. “We saw your smoke signal,” they replied.
It is easy to get discouraged when things are going bad, but we shouldn’t lose heart because God is at work in our lives, even in the midst of pain and suffering. So, remember, next time you feel your hut is burning to the ground, it just may be a smoke signal that summons the grace of God. No matter our age, God is our joy, hope and peace. God steers our ship and we need to trust.
A Parent’s Prayer
Lord, as I live this day, please grant me the ability to laugh at my children’s antics: the time to share their moments of pride: the need to praise their separate strengths: the faith to trust their growing judgment; the patience to understand their changing moods; the ears to hear what they are saying; the tenderness to understand their broken dreams. And the wisdom to accept that their lives, as my own, are built just one day at a time.
Along the same lines, I share the following story which was recently sent to me. This story not only applies to any young person, but to all of us no matter our age… Read… and please pass it on…..
The Tracks We Leave
When I was a boy, I used to love walking in the woods around my home. My Mom warned me several times never to travel so far that I would lose sight of the house. Being a typical boy, however, I soon found myself hiking further and further away, testing just how far I could go into the woods without getting lost. After losing my way once for two hours, though, I decided that I had better leave a trail the next time I went for a walk.
The very next day I decided to try it. I walked into the woods until the house was out of sight. Then I broke a small branch on a young tree to mark my place. I wandered further in and broke another limb and then another. In few spots where there were no limbs small enough, I snapped the heads off Daises and Queen Anne’s Lace that were growing where the sunlight broke through the trees. After a while I finally got tired and decided to head back. Turning around I easily found my tracks, but instead of being proud I felt sad. I could see the trail of destruction I had left in the woods going on and on. Looking at the broken limbs and dead flowers, I wondered if God was disappointed in me, and I vowed never to do that again. Instead, I started to cherish my times alone in the woods with God. I’d sit by the streams and listen to them sing. I’d watch the birds and squirrels. I’d bend down to smell the flowers. And I even buried an acorn or two hoping that one day an Oak Tree might grow.
There is an old Native American saying that goes: “We will be known forever by the tracks we leave.” As I have grown older and wise, I have done my best to never leave a trail of destruction in my life as I did in the woods that day. I have instead strived to leave tracks of love, kindness, goodness and compassion and I have strived to show others that they can do the same. May you always leave tracks of joy as you follow your own trail of love to God.
God bless all our graduates and may all of us leave tracks that walk in the footprints of Jesus.
On the road with you,
CLICK HERE to read the complete Weekly eNewsletter for the weekend of 06-13-21
As missionary disciples of Jesus Christ, we celebrate, transform, and engage our diverse Cathedral parish through worship, life-long formation, and service to one another.