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“how much more will your heavenly Father give…?
Where did all the food come from? Because it was raining outside we kept the “Outdoor Mass” and picnic inside last Sunday. As the picture on the cover of this bulletin shows, the hall was packed with picnickers. Yet there was lots and lots of food left when we were done! Seeing all that food left brought to mind an old seminary professor who once said: the Eucharist is potluck! We all share what we have to give, God pours his Spirit out upon our gifts and we end up with so much more than what we gave!
Thank you Family Life Committee for organizing this wonderful event. And I’m sure everyone on the committee would agree that it was Deb (Joe) Ortner who deserves the greatest credit. It was her project pretty much from start to finish. At their next meeting, the location of next year’s Three Parish Picnic will be determined, and unlike this year, someone will be put in charge of weather!
Our people giving a report on their trip to Kenya Africa today would also be quick to testify that our heavenly Father cannot be outdone in generosity. From the look of the buildings and the slenderness of the people in the pictures it’s pretty clear that our brothers and sisters at St. Francis parish in Saikeri Kenya have very little in material possessions. Yet all of us who went felt we received so much more than what we gave. Personally, I felt poor in their presence. Poor in Spirit, poor in joy, poor in community. And they gladly showered us with those gifts. It makes you wonder “how much more will our heavenly Father give” if we but opened our hearts to receive.
Our hope today is to convey to you the gratitude the people of Saikeri expressed to us for the gardening supplies we have sent them. We visited two families that have the ground broken up and were ready to begin planting. They were planning to go ahead even though it means carrying water to the gardens by hand since the electricity has been down for six months and there is no guessing when it will come back up. We also visited a public elementary school that is unable to provide it’s students with a lunch.
The mission team came back with lots of ideas about where we go next in nurturing our relationship with our sister parish. We will bring those to the August 11 th meeting of the Social Concerns committee and seek their help in discerning our next steps. A possibility we will propose is that next summer we host visitors from there.
Fr. John will be back in the US next summer. His travel is usually funded by a large charitable organization called Cross International. They built the parish school and rescue home in Ewuaso. So when Fr. John travels they like to send him to personally update people on the impact their contributions are having. Fr. John thought Cross International might fund the travel of several of his parish members as well. I’d love to get some of their choir members here!! At this point it is just an idea. But one Fr. John is working on.
I’ve heard people say, “But don’t we have people right here at home that need help?” I couldn’t agree more. That’s why we are putting together another big pot-luck. This one, however, is not with food, but with furniture. With the House of Mercy purchased and the minor repairs needed underway, it is time to organize the next phase: furnishing the apartments. I’ve had a good response from individuals about this idea, so I boldly bring it now to all of you.
Would each parish be willing to adopt one apartment? Adoption means making the now bare rooms ready for use by families. The apartments all have appliances, including washers and dryers. But there are no beds, dressers, chairs, tables, etc. It will be best to identify a lead person in each parish to coordinate the efforts of everyone else in the parish. If you are interested please contact Judy Morrow or myself.
A number of people have already told me they have some furniture set aside they’d like to contribute. I have this feeling we are all going to end up wondering here too: “How much more will our heavenly Father give….!”
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