Twilight Twitches

fetscherDear Family,

That’s how I ended last week’s Twitch. I think maybe the folks in the condos might have heard my sigh of relief. As I was finishing the Twitch the engineer told us we were okay. All we need to do is put down a little mesh and concrete mixture to smooth out the cracks. That will happen soon.

As those extraordinary rescue workers continued their search on the rubble in Surfside, I couldn’t help but be a little distracted about cracks in buildings, especially our building.

Then I think about all those people caught in the collapse. I hope the work of recovering those “temples of the Holy Spirit” (cf. 1 Cor. 6:19) comes to an end with some sense of conclusion for relatives and friends of those who perished. Our bodies are sacred spaces that require careful tending and respect. At a funeral we incense the body as a sign of the respect that body is owed.

I’m sure the relatives and friends who have been keeping vigil know just how reverently the remains of their loved ones have been handled by the rescuers/recoverers.

The readings this weekend are well timed. We hear about how important a good shepherd is to his flock. I was very touched by one commentator who said that a shepherd was so close to his flock, that the mere sound of his voice could have a calming effect on them. The shepherd removed their fear. That’s my kind of shepherd.

We have fears about all sorts of things. It’s not just building cracks. Frequently I find myself more than a little upset by the way our society seems to crack... crowds in a street, often fed by ignorance. I pray the Lord will help me keep focused on Him so that I don’t get caught up in this or that frénésie-du-jour. And just in case you might miss it, I am trusting you understand that when I say I, I am talking about a very big “WE.”

What did Jeremiah say today? “I will appoint shepherds for them who will shepherd them so that they need no longer fear and tremble...”

There are days when we find ourselves looking around and saying, “Where is that promised shepherd?” At the risk of making it seem too simple, the point is that Jesus is our shepherd above all others. When we can focus on Him, I believe He helps us listen with better discernment to the voices that govern our day-to-day lives. He helps us discern truth and wisdom. Often that is not easy. Nevertheless, if Jesus isn’t there to help, I’m not sure why we gather in prayer at all.

The latest edition of the Miami Florida Catholic carried coverage of the collapse of the Champlain Towers South and the ministry of the Church, especially that of Father Juan Sosa. A number of the people who died were members of his parish, St. Joseph’s. I hope I never have to see pictures like that again. Yet, when I come to a point where I want to say, “Stop showing me the heartbreak I have seen over and over,” I realize how selfish that is and again I stop to pray for all those who are grieving and mourning. Imagine the pain of the family who lost a one-year-old child.

ALSO!!!... COVID-19 is not over. It is so important that we maintain the masks in Church as well as the spacing. With the new variants of the disease showing themselves, we know we are not done. Do all you can to persuade people, especially the young people, TO GET VACCINATED!!! It is a blessing like the Salk vaccine and measles vaccine. It’s stupid not to accept the gift we have been given.

In Jesus our Savior and Super Vaccinator,
sign frjim

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