Today was an interesting day at Mass. It was the first Sunday Mass with our new pastor. It was very obvious that he knew that this transition for our parish is not going to be an easy one. The parish is an old parish with members who have been attending there for 30+ years. Needless to say, we are the “newbies” even though we have now been parishioners for a year. Little things he did differently than our former pastor were immediately frowned upon by many there. I really pray for him and for this parish. Even though we rarely know the reasons why the different happenings in our life occur, there can ALWAYS be something learned if we only open our hearts. This is a maxim of life that I learned many, many years ago and makes the rough patches of life so much easier to bear! Time will tell how it all goes.
One of the things that Msgr talked about during his homily was about the references in the Old Testament reading as well as in the Gospel reading to shade. He mentioned how when he was an Army chaplain and in the desert, the soldiers wanted to find shade. But, shade isn’t always “free”. In the desert, where there is shade, there are scorpions, snakes and other desert creatures also looking for shade.
I couldn’t help but think of this as an allegory to life these days in America. As Christians, we work hard and see being in America as our “shade”. But we need to remember that seeking rest in the ‘shade’ doesn’t always equal respite. Mary sat in the shadows of the cross. Her time in the shade surely didn’t equal a respite. Instead, it was filled with pain and sorrow.
What are we being called to route out of the shade here in America? The next election needs to be considered carefully. In case it helps, check out this video…