Dear Sacred Heart and St. Mary on the Lake,
Many blessings to our Dads on this Father’s Day! I thought of this verse from the 5th Chapter of John that provides insight into this day. There Jesus had healed a crippled man on the sabbath. Afterwards, Jesus is accused, correctly by the way, of making God His Father. John 5:19: Jesus answered and said to them, “Amen, amen, I say to you, a son cannot do anything on his own, but only what he sees his father doing; for what he does, his son will do also.”
What a powerful description of what it means to be a son or daughter and of what it means to be a Father! A child will only do what they see their father doing—what he does, they
will do also. Are you watching your Heavenly Father closely?
Speaking to the men of our parishes in particular, a fair question to ask is this: When does Fatherhood start? The obvious answer seems to be when that life changing moment
happens—marriage and the starting of a family. As a priest it begins at Ordination when that name is given. There is a transformation that takes place at those pivotal moments.
But Fatherhood is meant to start long before that moment, a sense in which I am aware of my actions and what I am showing to the people around me, something that I want them to live themselves. Brothers, Christian maturity is this awareness that already, today, right now, is the day to begin living our Fatherhood. Already there are a train of people watching us from siblings, cousins, roommates, classmates, to the world. Yes, the world watches and what do they see? By watching me could they bring life in the same way Jesus did by reflecting in a visible way our Heavenly Father in the world?
To be a Father should be what it means to be a Christian man. And that means being a life on display and a life poured out. There is such a great challenge to this, the reminder of how God already wants to work in us and through us. That our own growth is something directly beneficial not only to us but to the people around us.
When I think of Fathers I think of stability, dependability, integrity. I grew up on a dairy farm that my Dad is still running. To this day I can tell you what he is doing at any given time of
the day. When I think of my work ethic, I think of him, only doing what I have seen him do for my entire life. This was a helpful realization in my time of seminary because it provided a great context in which these habits exist. My prayer life isn’t just for me, but for the people who I will serve and who are watching me. My own schedule and choices are not just for me, but for those around me. This doesn’t happen magically; someday it can only be lived, and that is meant to be today.
A reminder that next weekend, on Sunday the 25th, Fr. Seamus Kettner will be celebrating two Masses of Thanksgiving. He will celebrate the 9:30am Mass at St. Mary on the Lake (hearing confessions from 8:30-9:15am beforehand) and the 11am Mass at Sacred Heart. There will be a light reception to follow the 11am Mass where you can say hi and he will be offering first blessings.
We will have our 3rd Annual Youth Kickball Tournament Friday the 23rd. We will be playing kickball down at Thompson Park—dinner included. This will be the first event we will have both of our seminarians present for as well. I think this is a great way for them to meet people from both of our parishes. Come on down—it is always a fun evening!
No 8:00am morning Mass on Monday, June 19th. Fr. Ginu is on vacation.