16 March 2011

The Folk

This afternoon after mass, I began my three block walk to my car.  I had timed my afternoon perfectly, bringing Holy Communion to a senior citizens' residence, found parking in front of the library (where I needed to go after mass), walked to St. Thomas Aquinas Church, prayed midday prayer and assisted at mass.

As my feet hit the pavement, I put on my windbreaker and Mets hat.  It had begun raining at 9:00 and it was still precipitating steadily at 12:40.  A man from across the street -- a gentleman into his seventies -- called, "Brother!" from across the street.  He demurred, however, after he saw me put on my jacket and hat.  You see, he was going to offer me his umbrella because he was worried that I was going to get wet in the rain.  We struck up a conversation as we walked down the street, chatting about the parish and the former pastor.  My new friend was a gentleman through and through.

And after we parted I found myself thinking, "Damn, aren't the people good to us."  (Incidents of charity orientated in my direction simply because of my "status" are quite regular and the umbrella offer is just one of many examples.)

We -- religious and clergy -- don't necessarily deserve it.  But, more often than not, the people are so incredibly good to us.  We haven't earned it by any means, but still the People of God are good.

So, as I make my way down to the chapel to pray evening prayer, I pray it on their behalf.  It's the least that I can do for people who are so incredibly good.

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