Friday, May 14, 2021

Moving Out and Moving Ahead Cautiosly

Sunset over the Gulf of Mexico
       I have not posted here in over two months and have considered closing down this blog, but alas I have thought of a specific direction to take for it moving forward. while I am tempted to jump into the frey of battle ab out ecclesial and civil politics I will not be doing so. Those who follow me on Facebook know that I often share posts expressing ideas that I agree with.  On this blog I hope to simply share some of my current experiences which I believe may be of interest especially to my many friends.  So here goes.

Walkway along Tampa Bay
    As many of you know I am now "retired". I don't like that word. I don't believe that it fits my reality.  I am a Franciscan friar and a priest. One does not cease to be either.  Retirement in my context means that I no longer have an obligation to engage in a full time amount of ministerial activity or to earn a certain amount of money to support my order.  I can do as much or as little as I like and contribute what I can to the order.  It is a time  really to intensify m life of prayer and to deepen my relationship with the Lord.  As part of this I am finding enjoyment in simply taking in the beauty of Tampa Bay and the many beautiful creatures that are part of this wonderful area.

    Last Sunday I was able for the first time since the restrictions of the Covid-19 pandemic began to celebrate Mass outside the confines of St. Anthony Friary.  What a joy that was as I went over to St. Paul's church here in St. Pete.  In the months ahead I will do some other Masses in local parishes and begin again to occasionally preach for Unbound.  (If you are not familiar go to Unbound.). I am goind to limit the preaching of parish missions to Lent and Advent with few exceptions.

   For the past fourteen months my Franciscan fraternal life has sustained me. The schedule of community meals, prayer and plain old good times has been a blessing.  Another blessing is the fact that  though restricted in many ways I have been able to go for walks and to visit some local places safely. The biggest blessing is that all of us here at the friary avoided contracting the corona virus and all of us are now fully vaccinated.

  Finally next week, May 22, I will celebrate 50 years of ordained ministry as a priest.  The next day, May 23, is Pentecost Sunday and I will preside at our community Mass to celebrate this anniversary. I invite you to join with me in prayer for that occasion.  My next two blog entries will reflect on what this 50 years has meant to me.

    God Bless!

  

 

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Moving Out and Moving Ahead Cautiosly