Twilight Twitches

fetscherDear Family,
Tomorrow, on the feast of St. Francis of Assisi, we will gather in the little parking area behind the chapel at 6:00 p.m. to bless the animals. I’m hoping that the iguanas who sometimes inhabit the java plum trees over the area will feel free to drop in and not on.

We will also have some Shaq-a-ronis to continue the fun. I like the idea that one of the first “meals” we will have in our recovery time is a decent pizza. Pease make sure your pets are leashed or carried.

One of my most fun memories of this day, was when J. T. Cowgill brought a bearded dragon. Whatever attributes the dragon had, beauty was not one of them. Of course, beauty is in the eye of the beholder. J. T. has long since graduated college. Wonder if the dragon went with him. If I get any dragon news, I’ll let you know.

Francis has long been portrayed as the patron saint of animals. It went along with his profound sense of the beauty of all creation, something that characterized his life. I highly recommend a trip to Wikipedia and the article on Francis. This is a quote:

“On 29 November 1979, Saint Pope John Paul II declared Francis (of Assisi) the patron saint of ecology. On 28 March 1982, John Paul II said that Francis' love and care for creation was a challenge for contemporary Catholics and a reminder ‘not to behave like dissident predators where nature is concerned, but to assume responsibility for it, taking all care so that eve¬rything stays healthy and integrated, so as to offer a welcoming and friendly environment even to those who succeed us.’

The same Pope wrote on the occasion of the World Day of Peace, 1 January 1990, that Francis ‘invited all of creation – animals, plants, natural forces, even Brother Sun and Sister Moon – to give honor and praise to the Lord. The poor man of Assisi gives us striking witness that when we are at peace with God, we are better able to devote ourselves to building up that peace with all creation which is inseparable from peace among all peoples.”

The same Wikipedia article also noted:

When the new Pope (Pope Francis in 2013) won the conclave ballot, Cardinal Hummes (A Franciscan and a bishop from Brazil) whispered to the Pope, "Don't forget the poor". The Pope said that immediately he remembered St. Francis of Assisi, "the man of poverty, the man of peace, the man who loves and protects creation," and "the name Francis came into my heart". When the newly elected Pope Francis appeared on the balcony shortly after his election, Cardinal Hummes was among the cardinals who accompanied the new pope and stood beside him at his immediate left on the balcony.

It turns out that Cardinal Hummes himself was very active in climate issues and how those things affect our world in the future. The Cardinal is currently 84. It’s nice to think that someone our age is very concerned about the world we will be leaving behind.

The last thing we need is another issue to divide us. God knows the very phrase “climate change” sure pushes some peoples’ buttons. Nevertheless, polarization notwithstanding, failure to engage each other in moving toward environmental wisdom and integrity cannot be an option.

So, with hearts full of hope we will have our little blessing ceremony. We ask St. Francis to help us cherish not only our pets, but the world in which they and we live.

On another note, last week had some nice memories for me. We celebrated the Archangels Michael, Gabriel and Raphael on the 29th, and the Guardian Angels on the 2nd. I was named pastor on the 29th (2010) and installed as pastor on the 2nd. It’s been a very happy 11 years for me, and I hope for you, too. Hang loose, and watch out for iguanas dropping...

In Jesus,
sign frjim

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