Tuesday, April 12, 2011
The team is composed of eight members and every Thursday night for ten weeks we have met with those who are discerning whether they should return to the Catholic Church.There are nine people who we are accompanying on this journey and it has been a challenging time.Last week, we talked about the sex scandals in the church and the discussion was loud and unpleasant.The team's role was not to defend but to listen and it was difficult for me,as I love the Church.
Later, the discussion had me thinking of another tumultuous time in the Church in Georgia when it became known that our Arch-Bishop was involved with a young, and to my mind disturbed, member of a church near mine.He chose to resign,stay a priest and move to another state.Just when I had started to get over this, something else tumbled out into the press that really knock me for a loop.It was a sunny,Spring Sunday morning and before going to Mass,I opened the paper to find that another priest was leaving as he had been involved with her as well.I had met this priest and admired him.This was too much.He had gone back to Ireland and I went to Mass,heavy hearted.
This was not a crying time but I felt anger,confusion and great disappointment and I took that with me to church.After ,I waited for my husband in the foyer and out of the church doors came Linda,who is a Down's Syndrome child.She was eleven at the time,pudgy,brown hair and usually smiling.She walked straight to me and took me in her arms.Her hug was long and comforting.She released me,smiled and went on her way.Linda does not know me,has never met me and has not spoken to me since.
When I worked at BellSouth in the eighties, I had a friend,Nancy.I was her sponsor when she came into the church. so we had many spiritual discussions.I think of how often she would share a problem and say,"Why doesn't He fix it?".Then I would wait for her to laugh and I would join her.I would quietly say,"That's not His job" and we would laugh some more.
All that we are promised is this,which feels like small warm arms around me;"I will be with you........always."