Twilight Twitches

fetscherDear Family,
Do you recall Barbra Streisand’s song, “The Way We Were”? A couple of lines have been haunting me.

Mem’ries, light the corners of my mind...
What’s too painful to remember
We simply choose to forget...

As it often can be the case with so many things, one day something has huge importance; the next day we’ve moved on to the next “huge importance.”

My memory of the pictures of the scouring of the northern Bahamas will not pass away any time soon, not when the reality is 100 miles off our shores. Truthfully, maybe the memory will help me be far more concerned about something other than myself.

Last Sunday, between all the three Masses, there were 291 of us present. Our Parish collection was about $3,500 but you gave $3,777 for the Bahamas. That’s the way it should be. I like to think we’ve got our priorities straight. I’m very proud to be part of this community.

I know that many of you have also helped through the Red Cross and similar organizations. I suspect that in the immediate future money won’t be the issue. As we can see from the news reports, it’s the sheer logistics of organizing the help and finding the people who need it. Another reason to be proud was seeing the U. S. Coast Guard helicopters on site so quickly.

Memories... What do we do with them? Treasure them? Shove them away? Laugh over them? Weep? All of the above, I suppose. As I reflect on it, I guess the biggest problem might be letting memories freeze us in our steps. Occasionally, a healthy pause might be just what we need, but ultimately, we are children of the future, not captives of our pasts. Good or bad, if memories only serve to stop our journeys, they fail us.

Imagine being a Bahamian surviving Marsh Harbor. You’re not going to forget that for a long time. To this day, when I hear rain pelt on win¬dows, it makes me jump and instantly pulls me back 27 years to August 25, 1992 when Andrew tore my parish in half. (Literally... the parish is on 120 Street and the homes south of the parish grounds were wiped and the homes on the north survived better. Another fact: Andrew took about 3 hours, if that long. Dorian lurked and ground for nearly two days.) No, you don’t forget quickly.

Okay, now this is the point in the Twitch when I ought to be shifting into a positive mode. Good¬ness knows, there are enough reasons to do so. For one thing, we didn’t get what we thought we might. But the truth is, I’m not ready just yet.

I think I (we) need to linger with those who must be put back together. We need to watch for whatever opportunities present themselves to us to help. As I said last Sunday, if it isn’t to help, why were we spared? If you think you have a better answer, please don’t tell me, because I don’t want to be reported to the Archbishop for bopping someone on the head.

I will try and keep working on my sense of humor, and if a little of it is black right now, I guess we all understand. I hope so.

Next week, I’m going to tell you about our efforts to switch all the materials we use for festiv¬ities and meetings to biodegradable stuff. Maybe that will be a more manageable subject to ponder.

Until then, we stay in prayer for our sisters and brothers to the east, and we ask the Lord to fill our hearts with gratitude and generosity.

In Jesus,
sign frjim

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