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Welcome! I'm Father Greg. This site is a forum for St. Andrew parishioners to ask ANY (appropriate) questions about the Catholic faith, related or unrelated to my posts. All comments have to meet my approval before they are posted. I'm sorry for the approval process and subsequent delays, and I thank you for your patience and understanding. This is a site for positive and inspiring comments that will benefit people. Thanks, and may you know the peace of Christ!
When I was young, I worked as a rectory aide at my parish, Our Lady of Lourdes in Bethesda. For four hours every Thursday, I answered the phones, answered the door, and locked the Church. It was a pretty good gig: I made $7 cash plus two Cokes! The highlight was whenever the priest would come to visit me or check in. I was at the far end of the rectory, so I would always hear the priest coming. This gave me time to straighten myself up, turn off the TV, and look holy or something. One night during the summer, I heard a priest coming to see me. I got myself in order and then he popped in. He was wearing a t-shirt, swimming trunks, a funny hat, and had a towel draped over his shoulder. He said, “Hi, I’m Father Wells, the new priest”. “Hi”, I said. “I’m going to a pool party. You wanna go?”, he asked. “I have to answer the phones”, I replied, kind of mystified that he would even ask. “Ok, see ya later”, he said. Then, he was gone. I was thinking to myself, ‘what just happened? Who was that?’
Is there any difference between Communion that is offered at a Catholic Mass and Communion that is offered at a Protestant service? I’ve heard many people, including Catholics, say no, there is no difference. A good friend of mine, Ken, would answer differently. Ken was a Protestant who came to RCIA when I was leading it in my last parish. On the first night when everyone introduced themselves to the group, Ken made it very clear that he had no intention of becoming Catholic. Married to a Catholic with two kids in a Catholic school, he said that he simply wanted to go deeper in his study of the Bible; he had studied the Bible extensively before RCIA.
I've been getting thoughtful emails and notes from former parishioners and friends, asking how things are going here at the Newman Center. A few of them have made the comment that it's probably quiet here now, with the students away on summer break. Sha! I understand their thinking, but there has been much going on here this summer. We've undertaken many projects to fix up the Newman Center; most to address structural problems in this 100 year-old home and some to improve things aesthetically.
Next week, the Archdiocese is hosting a retreat for high school young men, "Quo Vadis Days". This retreat has been held in other dioceses, with 100 boys attending in at least two dioceses. Currently, there are less than 30 signed up to go next week. We need more guys going! It will be a GREAT experience for the boys to enjoy some fraternity and grow in holiness. Please encourage any high school boys who you think may be interested to go...and bring their friends!
“Do not work for food that perishes but for the food that endures for eternal life”. This teaching from our Lord reminds me of a friend of mine. When I met her a few years ago, she basically admitted that her life was all about food that perishes, it was all about this world. She was living a secular lifestyle and pursuing a secular career. It wasn’t all bad, but she wasn’t happy. At the same time, she wanted to go deeper in her Catholic faith. It was so cool to see her go deeper during those weeks and months and begin to work for food that endures for eternal life. It didn’t surprise me, then, when she called me sometime later to let me know that she was entering religious life as a sister. Very cool stuff! It is so amazing to see young people go deeper in their faith, be open to God’s Call, and then follow it. Now, we don’t need to enter religious life to live out this teaching of Christ’s, but my friend is a great example to us. We should all look at our lives and see if they are just about this world only or if they point to something else: eternal life.