Monday, July 25, 2016


This weekend we took a group of our high school students to the Franciscan University of Steubenville for the summer youth retreat.  It was in the 90s and packed and I am a bit of a fuddy-duddy anyway on top of being merely uncomfortable and stinky.
There was absolutely nothing wrong with the youth conference.  It is just that it was designed more for youth, not a 50 year old guy.  My idea of a retreat is a meeting with a director for an hour or so and then going away to think and pray - silently - in air conditioning - alone - in a comfortable chair.

In case of emergency back at the ranch, I left my cell phone number at the parish.  But everything seemed well in hand when I left and I really did not expect to hear anything.
So I expected to enjoy and nice little escape from the parish, free from any responsibility except for prayer and enjoying the company of my high schoolers.
I stayed up hearing confessions until midnight in the university chapel with assurances that the parish was in capable hands and all was right in the world.

It is nice to know that the world can get along perfectly well without me and that the parish is such a well oiled machine that they would not even know if I was gone for a month.

And even if that is not true, I have an active enough imagination and a fierce ability to live in denial to convince myself for a while that it is.


Chris P. said...

Wow... the baby was going nuts all morning, the 7 year old was going nuts, everything was crazy, I was cranky because we missed church at 9, 11, and 1, and was forced out of my comfort zone (oh the horror) having to go to another church. We ended up at St A in Barberton at 5:15. I provided one of my least productive worships in mass in YEARS because my head wasn't in the right place...

And then I swap out memory cards in the sacristy this morning and see Fr. L as a glowing ball of sweat. And Deacon Terry as an equally glowing ball of sweat. And glowing visiting priests, and glowing seminarians, and glowing acolytes...

And to think I was feeling sorry for myself because I had to attend one of the other 100 masses that the Church provides locally for me on a Sunday. While sitting in air conditioning.

God seems to provide regardless of whether or not I want to be thankful for it. Sigh.

Stephen said...

Dear Father,

You 50 y/o kids really bug us 63 year old kids. Your 3rd, 4th & 5th decades of life are the best. Its only in the 6th decade that one starts thinking about preparing for
a landing.

brockkr said...

It was SO hot, Father. I could hardly protest when my 3 year old took his shirt off during Mass. Other weeks I protest. Not this time. It gave my family a bit of perspective that this happened during the time the Missionary priest was here. It made us think about the conditions that Catholics around the world endure in order to receive Holy Communion.