You Have A Gift
It’s been a few weeks since the graduation season has passed. Commencements are interesting events with the variety of colors, hoods, ribbons, and tassels which overlay the basic academic gowns of students and faculty. Some might speculate that those with the most stuff are the ones who will be the most successful. Life experience, however, teaches us that often those with the most honors fall short of both happiness and success, while some who are the quietest and devoid of decoration go on to change the world.
Each person has a gift – or perhaps several gifts – worth sharing. No one is insignificant or without worth, regardless of the honors heaped upon them.
Annually, I make a retreat at a wonderful center operated by the Marian Servants in Florida. They serve spiritual directors, clergy and Religious, and souls hungry for a deeper experience of God. The local members of the Servants – a group of laity devoted to holiness and service – care for the retreatants by volunteering. One elderly lady, in particular, has a true gift for cleaning. Yes, cleaning. She prayerfully goes after bathrooms and dirty floors with joy. She has a gift.
When I attended the Frassati High School Baccalaureate Mass a few weeks ago, there were volunteers on the street to greet the incoming visitors and clergy. With smiles and welcomes, they passed us on to the parking lot crew, who funneled us into the building, down the hall to the vesting room for priests. Every one offered a smile and a genuine message of welcome. Those people have a gift.
Not long ago, I received an email from a parishioner who provides a service doing criminal background checks on structures and neighborhoods. He asked what he could do to aid the Church. Who’d have thought? He, too, has a gift.
God is never going to ask me as a pastor how many Eucharistic ministers we have. He is going to inquire about whether I served the people of God by helping you to find your gift for the Church community and use it. People greet at the doors, wash the altar linen, sort donated groceries, facilitate group discussions with youth, care for flowers, write notes, make phone calls, visit the sick and lonely, set up for Mass. There are thousands of other possibilities.
One of the most important gifts at Prince of Peace is gathering in small groups. People come together in homes, view a video from Formed.org, share, pray and eat…
And so: how are you a gift to God’s Church? If you’re not sure where God’s call may be, give us a call at the parish office. Our gift is helping you to find yours…