Monday, June 4, 2012

Anniversary Thoughts


My pastor had a reception that celebrated 45 years of his priesthood...wow...45 years...Today is the official day of his priestly ordination...June 4th...and how is he celebrating it? *Chuckling to myself* He's celebrating it by running around in the office, making photocopies of this, that, and something else. He's answering phone calls, doing his duties as usual as the pastor of the Cathedral...*shaking my head* I don't know how he does it. Last night many people came to a reception for him...stories were told, people congratulated him, thoughts were shared, songs were sung...45 years...dang...and here I am...celebrating my first year as a priest...just a baby...lol...a baby-priest


Man! I'm a priest! Who would have thunk it? I mean, since the junior year of high school I had thought about the priesthood...but I'm actually here now; one year in...to be actually IN THE PERSON OF CHRIST! To be able to preach the word of God, to reconcile people back to God, to witness marriages, baptize, anoint, bring converts into the fullness of the faith...to...to bring the Eucharist into existence through my very being...I am no one, I am a broken man desiring only to please God in my lowliness...and HE chose me to be his priest...

and this is only the beginning

 
After being ordained a priest, I was able to go with my priest-brother to Poland to visit his family there. I was able to experience a Polish celebration of a man's ordination to the priesthood and I was able to concelebrate at Mass and say some of the prayers in Polish at Mass...lol 

Gallery Espresso, my fav.
I came to Savannah and began to really fall in love with this little city. City enough to appease the city-boy in this priest, and yet southern enough to give me the peace I desired. Being at the Cathedral allowed me to see the goodness of God and see how God touched the lives of many who came to visit my parish...

I suppose there is so much I can say about the things I have done, but I suppose that's what Facebook and Twitter is for..right?! lol...Oh yeah, and this blog too... :)

It just amazes me at what God has done so far in my life...GOD will never disappoint. You follow him and he will change your life. Sure He won't give you everything you want...why should he? :) He will answer your prayers, though. Sometimes his answer is just "No" and he gives you this answer because he desires something else for you...

Let's see...for those seminarians or newly ordained priests reading this...hmmm....Do I have any words for you, my brothers? Well, I'm not very wise...I can be very aloof, oblivious, and naive to situations and circumstances...lol...it's true...but I try my best to learn from my mistakes.

Humility is key, yet hard at times, especially when we are critiqued on how you celebrate Mass or preach... Remember, brothers that it will only be a few disgruntled people of God that will make their voices known. Why? I'm not to sure why, it's just the way it seems to work out. But know this, the other people ARE actually benefiting from your work. So keep going and take it with a grain of salt. Also, these grumpy people may have something worth considering. There is always SOME WAY we can do better, and though their presentation may not be the best, try to look past it and say, "What ARE they saying? What can I take away from this?" It's hard, trust me. But we can always improve in our ministry so long as we are willing to swallow our pride and reflect.

Conviction is necessary for our way of life...so compromise is not an option. Speak the truth. Be convicted of it. Teach the tradition. But PLEASE be sure to be pastoral about it. There is no point in yelling out the 10 Commandments at Mass if everyone is going to just tune you out. Know your audience. The early Church Fathers, and the great preachers/teachers in the faith knew how to speak to the people and pass on the Faith when they went outside of their own comfort zones and spoke the language of the people. Now, sometimes we do need to bring down the hammer :) but do it sparingly and in charity...still, never compromise. We as a people of God desire a standard worth living up to, so Be convicted of the faith you teach and people will see the goodness of God through it. Be it in teaching doctrine or teaching them traditional devotions, if they see your conviction, they will understand the goodness of it and follow.


Random duck from the reception
Joy. Never be afraid to have fun. A fruit of the Lord's presence is joy in our lives. So have fun. There are so many people who think that we are sad, depressed, bored, isolated, angry, people. And for those priests, seminarians, nuns, and other devout people reading this, you KNOW that is totally not true. There have been a number of saints that were known for their joy. They would play tricks on their friends. They would have fun doing recreational sports too. They would be witty and full of jokes...And it just makes sense, doesn't it? The Lord fills our life with goodness, so why wouldn't we be happy and full of joy? Allow the joy that God pours into your life be known to those around you.
I am excited to continue on in my priesthood. I am getting excited to go to my new parish in Valdosta. There will be more experiences there, I am sure. And I am sure you will be hearing about them. You will continue to hear my thoughts...the thoughts of a priest. And who knows, maybe the Lord will allow me to continue on for another 44 years...wow...44 years...Don't know what that will be like. Maybe in 44 years you will be able to just download my posts onto your chip that we will all have implanted into our brains! hahaha...oh gosh, i hope not! Anyways, I got to go and celebrate Mass on my anniversary day! Till then friends, remember:
by a student

4 comments:

  1. Thank you for being a priest, Fr. Chris. We welcome you to Valdosta. I was ordained a deacon a week ago and can appreciate that May 26 is the feast day of St. Philip Neri, known for his humor and wit. I have adopted him as my patron saint. Clergy have every reason to be joyful!
    Paul Worth

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  2. Congrats on your 1 yr anniv, Fr Chris!
    I especially liked your paragraph on "Conviction".

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  3. Thanks Fr. Chris!! Your post always make me laugh! I look forward to hearing of your adventures in Valdosta! Thank you for your "fiat" to our Lord!

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  4. Fr.Chris - Great to talk with you at the K of C meeting last night. Good luck in Valdosta! Mike Sullivan

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