Pastors Corner


July 16, 2023

Now, before I head down the road of telling you how much I despise moving, I must first say that I am very grateful to be with you all here at Saints Aloysius & Benedict. With that, here I am – literally sitting in my new rectory still surrounded by the chaos of moving. Moving is a pain. Few people enjoy the process; those who do, don’t seem quite right. It isn’t fun. Putting everything into boxes, hoping nothing gets broken, taking the often too heavy boxes outside to load them up, and then bringing those same heavy boxes in the new place, just to undo all that had been done – exhausting. I would have been completely lost without the dozens of people who gave of their time and comfort to help. Even with all the help, I often felt overwhelmed throughout it all. It simply isn’t fun. On top of all that, the timeframe quickly dwindled from a few months, to a couple of weeks, to just a day or two. The time to prepare just never seems long enough and yet the more time is available the easier it is to fill it up. 

Imagine what it must have been like for the Hebrew people. They moved down to Egypt, out of necessity. Either move or starve; they choose the road and got to it. Once in Egypt, it must have felt a bit preordained. The sins of the past (throwing a multicolored clad youth into a cistern just to pull him out and sell him into slavery) turned out, through God’s grace, to be a catalyst for the salvation of much of the known world from the impending famine. Yet it didn’t last. The memory of that multicolored clad instrument of sustenance soon faded, and the Egyptians found themselves giving into fear – a common aspect of the human story, how modern we are. Out of fear of their growing numbers, the Egyptians enslaved this people. Nevertheless, their numbers continued to grow. Midwives, an impermeable basket, and a hygienic princess later, we have a promising solution on the horizon. Murder and a flight into the desert awaited this soon-to-be staff-bearing, tongue-tied instrument of God’s emancipation. A few supernatural afflictions later, these former slaves are being rushed out of the country. Egypt seemed to be their home; for a time, everything was good, and even after it wasn’t, the idea of leaving was overwhelming, if not cataclysmic. It’s not easy to move.

For much of their early history, the Hebrew people were nomadic, temporarily staying in one place before moving to the next. Abraham himself did a stint in Egypt. They were people on the move, a people without a permanent home. The forty years in the desert, while no walk in the park, seemed to suit them – continuing to grow strong, they seemed to reconnect to who they are as a person, as God’s people. Even after they entered and settled the Promised Land, their situation seldom stayed promising for very long. They always seemed a bit restless, a bit out of place. 

We, the people of the baptized, are not unlike these chosen people. We are called to be a people on the move, an Easter people, who cry out Alleluia, He is risen! Yet here we are, not wanting to move, desiring to remain where we are comfortable. We find ourselves quick to complain when we are led out into the desert, even a desert on the way to the promised land. Once we have set out on the journey, how often do we turn back, prodigals lost along the way? I leave you with a prayer for the journey, one that is as difficult to pray as the journey is to traverse. It is known as the Susipe (Latin for receive) and was written by Saint Ignatius Loyola:

Take, Lord, and receive all my liberty, my memory, my understanding, and my entire will, All I have and call my own.

You have given all to me. To you, Lord, I return it.

Everything is yours; do with it what you will.

Give me only your love and your grace,

that is enough for me.

In peace, from one traveler to the next,

Fr. Adam