I recently read an article on transformational leadership by Nancy Sylvester, and I was struck by her thrust. “We are all connected, we just are not awake to it.” I particularly enjoyed a quote from Thomas Merton, a Trappist monk, who famously wrote about his experience at the corner of Fourth and Walnut in Louisville, Kentucky:
“I was suddenly overwhelmed with the realization that I loved all those people, that they were mine and I theirs, that we could not be alien to one another even though we were total strangers. It was like waking from a dream of separateness, of spurious self-isolation in a special world. ... And if only everybody could realize this! But it cannot be explained. There is no way of telling people that they are all walking around shining like the sun. ... If only they could all see themselves as they really are. If only we could see each other that way all the time. There would be no more war, no more hatred, no more cruelty, no more greed.”
Bishop Barber has established a committee on Racial Justice and Equality under the leadership of Fr. Leo Edgerly. Three of us from CTK including myself are part of this group, and we will be meeting on zoom for the first time this evening. Kindly keep our church, especially our diocese and our leaders in your prayer.
Although "church" has often been referred to as a building or organization, the original Greek ekklesia meant "a gathering, assembly" which is what God designed the church to be—a group of people, a body of believers defined by love. “For we were all baptized by one Spirit so as to form one body—whether Jews or Gentiles, slave or free—and we were all given the one Spirit to drink.” (1Cor 12: 12-13) The future of our church and world depends on transformational leaders who can bring forth in us new ways of addressing the common good amidst difficult choices. We need to remind ourselves constantly that we are all one, we are all connected and we are God’s children.
On October 4, people all over the world will be celebrating the feast day of the Patron Saint of Animals, St. Francis of Assisi. It’s customary that in remembrance of St. Francis’s love for all creatures, animals are brought to churches for a special blessing. Next weekend, October 3rd and 4th, you can attend church outdoors with your animals secured next to you. At the end of all the masses, the priests will go around blessing the animals.
I look forward to celebrating jubilees of the Sisters this Saturday at 5pm, followed by Music on the Lawn. I am also eager to celebrate the confirmation of our youth on Sunday at 6pm. May God bless our communities.