I made an appointment to talk with Fr. Marcelino and then cancelled it. I wanted to talk with him about the mission but it felt forced and I couldn't focus on what it was I really wanted to talk about so . . . I cancelled the appointment.
This past Sunday, after Mass announcements told of a meeting to be presented by Catholic Charities on responding to the call of Pope Francis. The agenda for the evening was to discuss serving the poor, working for peace, and caring for God's creation all under the umbrella of Catholic social teaching.
I thought this meeting might give me a place to start for pulling together the loose threads of my unfocused thoughts on what this mission would mean for me. I knew what I expected for Don - something positive, a way to inner peace and an escape from the negativity that our political activism has surrounded us in. Like most new things I take on, I just commit and then put one foot in front of the other and follow the bread crumbs. The meaning and purpose always seems to come afterwards.
There were about ten of us there, seven from the Hispanic community and Don, myself, and Melanie. I was relieved that there were ten there, I was disappointed that there weren't more. I guess this was a sort of Matthew 22:14 moment. By the end of the evening, we had navigated some dangerous waters.
Political buzz words such as globalization, climate change, social justice and redistribution of wealth reared up. Don listened closely, damping down his feelings about these buzz words. I focused on the messenger and tried to determine if this was pure Catholic social teaching or if it was tainted by catholic liberalism and humanism and socialism. Lots of isms trying to do what Christ taught us, all of them taking out the spirit that makes His teachings whole. Absent God, we really have nothing.
After the meeting, we told the group what we had planned for January and both of us were completely unprepared for the reaction. All of a sudden, there was a community of people reaching out to help us help others. YLI, KC, the Tuesday night Rosary ladies, Life Teen, Matthew's Ministry - with them there would be a way to receive assistance, prayers, and perhaps even goods to bring to Mother's House. Fr. Marcelino spoke of perhaps setting up a sister parish relationship.
Suddenly I feel more focused; I have more of an idea of what I can bring to our work whatever that will be. I'm going to call Fr. M. this week and get this ball rolling this week.