Some parish members had a meeting of sorts and my heart just about broke into a million pieces for my pastor. Then those itty bitty pieces took a trip through a meat grinder as I realized that his predicament is not unique... there are priests all over the country going through similar tribulations as they attempt to keep their parishes above water.
Humpf. All I wanted to do the entire time was give him a hug.
Since I wasn't really able to offer much in the way of assistance throughout the meeting, I kept silent and offered my prayers. As frustration began to build, I reached out to Our Lady of Wisdom (whom Father had invoked at opening prayers). As anger and hurt boiled up, I reached out to the Holy Spirit. Oh, but my heart was a calamity unto itself as I realized just how much stress our dear pastors are burdened with as a result of these haphazard mergers.
May Our Lady hug them all close to herself. May the Holy Spirit comfort them with Divine Grace. May their people open their hearts in understanding - our priests do so much more than we realize! God bless them all.
On a happy note, I'll leave a ridiculous picture of one of my favorite priests and I. He's been a wonderful family friend since his deaconate, and did me the honor of presiding over my marriage to John. He also baptized Vince! God willing, he'll baptize any future children we're blessed with. :)
Anyway, as I was visiting my mom before the parish meeting, he surprised us by dropping by! It's always great to see him!