From The Font
When he disembarked and saw the vast crowd, his heart was moved with pity for them, for they were like sheep without a shepherd; and he began to teach them many things.
Modern culture tells us that Jesus loves us just as we are and accepts us just as we are and that it’s both bigoted and unChristian to “judge” anyone’s choices… But as we look at today’s Gospel, we see that Jesus pities them because they have no guidance, no leadership. They are pitiable because no one has told them how to live well… Jesus’ response to that pitiable state was to have a group of disciples follow Him around as He set an example for them and then to commission those disciples to go and tell other people how to live well.
THAT’S US! The Apostles and the disciples (AKA bishops and laity) were commissioned to tell other people how to live well! And #YOLO and #OnlyGodCanJudgeMe are not living well. Any Christian - clergy or laity, man or woman, young or old - who hides behind this “who am I to judge” nonsense lacks faith and is, in a word, a coward. We are commissioned - every one of us - to go to the ends of the Earth and to share the good news of Jesus. We are commissioned to go to those pitiable people who are like sheep without a shepherd. Some are trying to find their way by making lots of money. Some are trying to have as much fun as their bodies and budget allow. Some are trying to find their way by following self-help gurus or fake Christians. Some have become obsessed with politics or so-called social justice issues.
But, if Jesus is God - and He is, then the only way to health and happiness is Him. The only real shepherd for these lost sheep is Him. And anyone who proposes that it’s more “merciful” or “tolerant” to let people wonder through life looking for meaning or purpose than it is to show them the source of meaning and purpose is a pretty terrible person. In fact, we could call that kind of person “evil.”
Jesus does love us just as we are. But the Gospel shows us that He pities those of us who are ambling through life without purpose and meaning. And the Gospel shows us that Jesus doesn’t want that to continue. He wants those people to be led and to be taught and, through these, to find happiness in Him and His Church.
Thoughts from Fr. Ryan
In today’s Gospel, Jesus says to His disciples: “Come away by yourselves to a deserted place and rest a while.” As I make plans to leave for my sabbatical, quite a lot of people have wished me well and they’ve said some variation of “I hope you get some good rest!”
When I’ve had time, I’ve explained my plans more completely to some folks. One of the first things that I say in that explanation is that “rest” isn’t likely to factor too prominently into my three months away. Despite the fact that the word “Sabbatical” comes from the Hebrew Sabbath - “day of rest.”
As I mentioned on my blog (FrHumphries.com), this trip is designed to be a lot of hard work. It’s actually more challenging than a classical sabbatical in which I would take a few graduate level classes in theology or ministry. It’s more challenging because rather than focus on academic growth and development, I’m challenging myself emotionally and spiritually.
The physical work of walking 12-20 miles from one village to another each day is challenging to be sure. There will be difficult physical moments in which my feet hurt or I don’t want to get back on the trail. But those moments are nothing compared to living for three months in a non-English-speaking culture and sleeping in a dorm room with little to no privacy and having to find an altar on which to offer Mass each day and being confronted with new people constantly and trying to answer challenges and questions in the my choppy Spanish and Italian and German. As a man who has basically lived alone for ten years and who is accustomed to a structured and quiet daily routine and who thoroughly understands and enjoys his job and responsibilities, these three months will entirely upend basically every aspect of my life.
Even after I finish the Camino, I’ll be spending time in Hungary and Prague and Poland. I don’t have one single word of Hungarian or Czech or Polish. I don’t have contacts there and I don’t have any practical knowledge of those cultures.
Of course, all of this is by design. This sabbatical isn’t about rest or recuperation. Thanks be to God, my wonderful parish of St. Edward in beautiful, downtown Tallulah, is a place of great peace and refreshment. I am very, very happy where I am and I don’t want or need rest from such a great community! I’m not leaving my idyllic life for rest. Rather, I’m stepping away for a bit to work in a focused way on aspects of myself that require particular environments.
Much the way an athlete needs specialized exercises and equipment to gain bodily strength and agility for his sport, a priest needs specialized exercises and environments to grow.
I am planning to share more about these exercises and environments via my blog and via a series of presentations both locally and around the diocese upon my return.
In the meantime, I do hope anyone reading this will pray for me and for all priests who are committed to training - physical, spiritual, intellectual and personal - so that they can be better tools for the Lord’s work in His Church!
Calendar of Events
- Confessions every Fri & Sat from 5p until Mass at 5:30p and on Sun from 9a until 9:30a Mass
- Pastoral Council meeting monthly on the third Tuesday after the 5:30p Mass
- Altar Society meeting every other month on the second Tuesday after the 5:30p Mass
- Sunday Morning Catechism in the Hall after the 9:30a Mass unless otherwise indicated
- July 21-22 Pilgrimage stories & pictures following both Masses. All are invited to attend.
- July 29 Coffee and doughnuts following Mass as a Send-Off to Seminarian Thomas who will be completing his assignment at St. Edward for this year and a Bon Voyage to Father Ryan!
- Aug - Oct Fr. Ryan on Sabbatical
For Your Information:
PILGRIMAGE TRIP…. following Mass on Saturday, July 21, and Sunday, July 22, in the Church Hall, there will be a program in which the accumulated pictures of the pilgrims who went to Italy in May will be shown. All are invited to attend and enjoy!
BOOK OF PHOTOS OF PILGRIMAGE...Father Ryan has collected many of the pictures that various people took on their trip to Italy and has edited them in to a book. If anyone is interested in obtaining a copy, the hardcover book is $45 and the softcover book is $30 per copy. If you would like a copy, please advise Father Ryan.
BISHOP GRECO MEMOIRS... In 1989, the Knights of Columbus collected, edited and published the memoirs of our own beloved Bp. Charles P. Greco. The book is wonderful and funny and evokes the memory of a man many of us knew. That publication has been out of print for twenty-five years, however. The parish has a few copies of the original printing. Fr. Ryan has scanned the original book and prepared both an eBook version and a print version. At the moment, our Diocesan lawyers are discussing the legality of re-printing that text. In the short term, those interested in reading the book should contact Fr. Ryan before he departs for sabbatical.
Our Return to the Lord
- Weekly Budget FY 2017-18 $1,917
- June Budget $7,668
- June Income $8,679
- June Expenses $9,520
- July Budget $9,585
- Collection July 14/15 $2,724
- July Income to Date $6,837
Stewardship In today’s Gospel, Jesus has planned to slip away from the crowd for a few moments of peace and a little rest. When he saw the people gathered, however, he put his needs aside to meet the needs of others. Sometimes, as good stewards, we are called to do the same.
Mass Schedule & Intentions for the Coming Week
- Sat 5:30p In memory of E. A. “Jim” Jumonville/family
- Sun 9:30a Pro Populo for the Living & Dead members of our Parish
- Mon No Mass
- Tue 5:30p In memory of Willie Guzman/Florence
- Wed 9:00a In memory of Rose Gremshell Olive Branch
- Thu 5:30p In memory of Jackson Jumonville/family
- Fri 5:30p In memory of Rosemary Roussel(birth)/Florence
- Sat 5:30p In memory of SeSe and Racer Holstead(wedding anniversary)/family
- Sun 9:30a Pro Populo for the Living & Dead members of our Parish Family
ALTAR CANDLES this week are provided by Margo Corulla
Assistants at Holy Mass
- 7/21 5:30p
- Lector: A Farlow
- EMHCs: CVanderVieren & L Bullard
- 7/22 9:30a
- Servers: H Ellerbee & C Sullivan
- Lector: Henry & Carter
- EMHCs: N & M Ernst
- 7/28 5:30p
- Lector: C VanderVieren
- EMHCs: P & M Gilfoil
- 7/29 9:30a
- Servers: W Sullivan & C Wood
- Lector: D Ellerbee
- EMHCs: B Smith & K Collins
- 8/4 5:30p
- Lector: L Bullard
- EMHCs: M Rome & A Farlow
- 8/5 9:30a
- Servers: EL & C Marsh
- Lector: K Collins
- EMHCs: N & M Ernst
Let us Rejoice in the Lord!
Happy Birthday Kendra Collins (July 21), Preston Collins (July 22), Sue Scurria (July 22), Nap Book (July 26), Edmond Copes (July 30)
Happy Anniversary Renee and Robert Wood (July 30)
In Our Daily Prayers…
Our Holy Father Pope Francis and Pope-Emeritus Benedict XVI; our Bishop David Talley and Bishop-Emeritus Ronald Herzog, our President, our Governor, our Mayor and our national, state and local elected representatives, our family and friends
Our parishioners who are sick, shut-in, or otherwise in need of our prayers: Pat Bullard, Connie Copes, Margo Corulla, Elizabeth Crothers, Susan Gilfoil, Bill Kennedy, Becky and Michael Lancaster, Dale and Louise Magoun, Kathleen Mills, Sue and Mike Rome, and Delia Trichell
Those under full-time care: Billy Hodge, Frances Kennedy, Andrew Lombardo, Sue Scurria. Jim Farrell of Vicksburg, Sharon Hansen of Gonzales, Consuelo Marsh of Lake Providence, Jean Cantrell, Marie Cedotal, Reba Duncan, Geneva Russell
Our friends and relatives who need our prayers: Lee Adams (Smith), Ashley Weimer Alexander (Regan), Jenna Faye Allen (Florence), Margaret Baker (Magoun), Marie Farlow Bellard, Hattie Brown (Lancaster), Jerry Bullard, Colton Bullock (Farlow), Richard Chappuis (Johnson), Kay Collins, Jackie Daniels (Lancaster), Vickie Dichiara (Hodge), Carol Dipert (Rome), Joe Farlow, Mike Farlow, Charles Michael Finlayson, JoAnn Phillips Finn (Hodge), Thom Gilfoil, Kathy Garley Hanlon (Gilfoil), Cooper Harris (R Wood), Bo Holloway, Diane Johnson (Johnson), Ben Lenhart (G Marsh), LaLa Lopez (Hernandez), Michelle McGuire (Gilfoil), Mathieu family in Delhi (Wilks), Tobie McKowen (Wilks), Keith Melancon (Regan), Tucker Melancon (Johnson), Lindsay Mills, Wanda Murphy (Terry), Debbie Pettis (Rome), Sam and Betty Phillips (Hodge), Wayne Pitre (Gilfoil), Lee, Tiffney & Bailey Rome, Dianne W. Roper (Murphy), Linda Sanchez (Wilks), Andy Sevier, Beverly Sibile (Gilfoil), Elaine and James Trimble (Rome), Teresa Vidrine (Wilks), Conner and Hudson Wood (nephews of Bart)
Our collegiates: Norman Ernst, Anna Ginn, Matt Hall, Nick Hall, Chris Hall, Kathleen Oliver, Maddie Oliver, Blake Sullivan, Lori Sullivan, Brice Wood
Those Catholics residing at Christian Acres, Louisiana Transitional Center for Women, and our local Detention Centers and for their families and loved ones.
PLEASE LET US KNOW OF ANYONE WHO IS ILL OR HOSPITALIZED OR WOULD LIKE TO RECEIVE A VISIT.
PLEASE HELP US TO UP-DATE OUR PRAYER LIST BY ADVISING US OF ANYONE WHO SHOULD BE REMOVED FROM THE PRAYER LIST.