Monday, June 27, 2011

vacation


"a week without You
thought i'd forget
two weeks without You and i
still haven't gotten over You yet" (The Go Go's - Vacation, 1982)
i'm off on vacation (almost two weeks). not to get away from Him, but to be closer to God in Our Lord Jesus Christ. i'm starting off with a personal retreat at Villa Madonna, Saint John, NB. then on to a St-Amand Family reunion in Grand Falls, NB. finally, a week in beautiful PEIsland with mom, dad, sister, and nieces! have a great two weeks and see you very soon. peace.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

nobody told me


"nobody told me there'd be days like these
strange days indeed -- strange days indeed" (John Lennon - Nobody Told Me, 1984)
after two years of priesthood, no one ever told me there'd be days like these! the NHL just had their draft last night. the rookies got a shirt + hat. i remember when i got my stole and chasuble - my ordination day was beautiful, filled with joy, a great and terrible day! i recently bought a new ball cap, as seen here, ... "P" for priest/prêtre! of course, this is a Pittsburgh Pirates ball cap, and having lived there for 1.5years, i have some feelings toward the team. of course, "P" could also stand for "pharisee", "pretender", or "pharisien". either way, we are called not to focus on issues, obstacles, or sin, but on our relationship with God in Our Lord Jesus Christ.

but that is what hurts - sometimes we let these issues get in the way and ignore the only one that matters - life with God in JC! i've been listening to the recent journey of my brother priest, Fr. John Corapi, now simply John Corapi, on XM Radio Catholic Channel - Willit's morning show, Lino Rulli - the Catholic Guy show. after 20 years, Corapi has left active ministry, but apparently not the priesthood. i wonder how those hockey players feel when after the honeymoon? once friends on the same team, some become enemies because they now play on different teams. once friends due to playing on the same team, can't remember the guy's name because he has left the team. friendship is such a peculiar thing, and yet there is nothing more beautiful than when you have found a good friend. after ordination i lost touch with some of my classmates. indeed, long distance relationships are difficult, eh? however, these issues are nothing compared to the hurt that one feels when a brother priest leaves active ministry and priesthood - after 5, 10, 15, 25, even 50 years of priestly ordination! nobody told me there would be days like these. strange days indeed.

these strange events, our brothers remind us to keep our eyes not on man but on God in Our Lord Jesus Christ! let us pray for Corapi, and all of us as we continue our journey of holiness, our journey to know, love, and follow God in JC!. as we celebrated la St-Jean yesterday, the Solemnity of St-John-the-Baptist, patron for all French Canadians, we echo his words of wisdom, "He must increase, i must decrease."

peace.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

just can't get enough


"oh baby i can't come down so please come help me out
You got me feelin' high and i can't step off the cloud
and i just can't get enough" (Black Eyed Peas - Just Can't Get Enough, 2011)

happy birthday to us, happy birthday to the Church! Pentecost is the birth of the Church, and through our Baptism, we are part of beautiful Holy Mother Church! indeed, Our Lord Jesus Christ sends us his peace and the Holy Spirit (Gospel of John 20:19-23), and i just can't get enough! happy birthday! as Bl. JPII would say, "love for Jesus and His Church should be the passion of our lives."

Thursday, June 02, 2011

hello

"i could stick around and get along with You
hello oh-oh-oh-oh
it doesn't really mean that i'm into You
hello oh-oh-oh-oh" (Martin Solveig fr. Dragonette - Hello, 2010)
the following picture is hand written code which results in printing "Hello World" - the first test of all programmers! i've forgotten how many times i've done this through DOS, Basic, QBasic, VBScript, JavaScript, VisualBasic, Java, C++, and my then favourites HTML, XML and ASP. i've forgotten most of it now, but the above song reminded me of my coding days. i still dabble in HTML through this very website, and when Blogger doesn't do what i want it to do, i add my on tags, for example the delete tag. however, God, the Father, had different plans for me, He loved me too much to leave me where i was. i knew of Him, and said hello, and it didn't mean that i want't a full time relationship. who was i kidding though, only myself! He seduced me, and i let myself be seduced! today i continue to seek Him in the Word - Scripture, Eucharist. after two years i continue to go deeper in the reality of being a priest for you, and a Christian with you.

however, sometimes i, along with with my brother priests, focus too much on being a priest and not enough time on being Christian - we too need the Sacraments, we too need the Eucharist, Scripture, we too need prayer and love. therefore, things were once again being stirred up in my heart when last week i started attending CCO's Courageous Catholic conference/talks.

every Tuesday night, with CCO Canada and my brothers and sisters, at the Diocesan Centre, we go deeper in the Ultimate Relationship! i love it. the question: who am i? what is our deepest identity as Christians, as Catholics? - not only individually, but as community too! the talks and sharing goes to heart of what we are as Christians, that is children of God, in a relationship with His Son, Our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.

my journey to the Father began like this song. i never wanted to get too close - God was a stranger to me. however, of course, He had other plans for me. then, i began knowing him better, and suddenly He was part of my life. one day, everything changed. God, in Jesus Christ, became the source, center and summit of my life. He seduced me, and i let myself be seduced. He is at the center of my life, and every day i try to understand what that really means, while striving to make Him known and loved by all.

this course brought an image to mind that i got from watching The Bourne Identity Trilogy. the first part was my favourite, and our lives are similar to Jason Bourne. we are citizens of heaven (Phil 3:20), yet find ourselves in this world and we do not know what's going on, what's going to happen, or why we are searching - but we have to know. our whole searching, our longing to know, finds it answer in Jesus Christ. that is the piece of the puzzle that frustrates us, but when He is part of our life, at the center of our life, everything changes!

there are many quotes from the movie that i enjoy, however, one of the top 3 is from Clive Owen's character, who is trying to take out Matt Damon's character. Matt's search for truth prevails, and Clive is going down, about to die, alone, in a field. "look at what they make you give," he says. look at what the world makes you give, makes me give! we forget so easily that we are beloved children of the Father, sons and daughters! look at what they make you give. Our relationship with Jesus Christ changes everything. if you know Him, there's nothing more i need to say. if you do not know Him, there's nothing i can say. however, we preach the Risen Crucified Christ, a stumbling block for the Jews, and folly to Gentiles (1 Cor 1:23). for those who are called, He is our salvation. peace.

ps: for those who are searching for me on Facebook, i'll explain later - indeed, i cut the cord, so please email me or call me.

pss: apparently the nominations are out. definitely more on this, since it will be affecting the rest of my life.