God is Good!

Seek the Lord while He may be found!

Motivate Yourself To Change Life

Mass at The Tomb of Christ

In the first days of my Priesthood, I, along with four other priests, acted as counselor, teacher, disciplinarian, spiritual leader, recreation director to some 850 youngsters at Maryville Academy, in nearby Des Plaines.  Their ages ranged from Nursery years through High School teens.  These normal, healthy young people spent all 12 months of the year at the Academy.

One day, the US Government sent us a railroad car full of cans of spinach.  Like most youngsters, the children at Maryville would have no part of spinach.  All our pleadings accomplished nothing.  A brilliant idea came to our weary minds one afternoon.  Why not bring in a series of Popeye cartoons and motivate the children to like spinach.  Popeye came often to our school and in each cartoon, as he faced dangerous situations where he needed strength; he pulled out a can of spinach to devour its contents with one gulp.  Power and strength came immediately to the unconquerable Popeye.  In no time at all, the children finished off all the cans of spinach in the railroad car, much to our relief.  They, too, wanted to be strong like Popeye.

When trying to make a change for the better in your life, think up good ideas why you want to change.  In other words, motivate yourself.  Our human wills have almost limitless power to help us make difficult decisions for a better way of life.  You want to stop smoking, or to cut down on your food intake, or to get along better with people.  Perhaps you haven’t been attending Mass on weekends.  Think up as many reasons as you can for wanting to be different.  If sufficiently motivated, your will power can work small miracles for you.  To encourage yourself to try, think often of the remarkable story of the Popeye cartoons at Maryville.  I have remembered it for over 68 years.

Today’s photo was a few moments after I had celebrated the Easter Mass of Resurrection on February 4, 1993.  Tom Cusack helped me at the Altar, especially with his flashlight.

Fr. George Mc Kenna

June 23, 2012 Posted by | Bulletins | 2 Comments

The Story Of The Lemon Cream Pie

We remember loving people and their loving deeds.  Back in the 1930s in the middle of the Great Depression, my Aunt Marie (also my godmother) would always bring a big lemon crème pie on her visits to our home.  I had a special taste for the luxury desert.  Aunt Marie knew!  All this took place some eighty years ago; but every time I eat lemon cream pie, I think of my loving Aunt Marie and bless her.  Pretend that we could come back in a second life, be reincarnated, with all the wisdom and experience of the first life in our possession.  If God would ask me at this time, “What gift would you like to have?  Ask for anything you wish!” – I wouldn’t ask for riches, high social position, a sharp intelligence.  My request would be: “Lord, make me a loving person”.

Why this gift?  The people who helped me the most in life were loving persons, such as my Aunt Marie, teachers who spoke positive, encouraging words and respected me despite my failures.  In the presence of gentle friends, I found myself at ease.  Only the love of my parents and family made it possible for me to grow and mature in a normal way. 

We need not come back in a second life to bring the gift of love into our lives.  In this present day, all of us can freely choose to be loving persons.  Take out “loving’ and put in any of these words: patient, forgiving, friendly, encouraging, rejoicing, or unselfish.

Loving persons accomplish the most good in life.  They bring peace to themselves, because they refuse to compete with others by trying to have the upper hand in all happenings of life.  In boosting others, they share in their accomplishments and bring extra joy into their lives.

I remember a little girl receiving the Eucharist in her hand.  In the middle of her palm, she had written the word “love”.  She will have a lasting place in my memory.  Look back in life and notice the power of loving actions for good.

As we rise from bed in the morning, a good prayer would be: “Lord, I want to be a loving person today, with only loving thoughts in my mind and loving words on my lips.”  Have confidence that we can act out this ideal.

Fr. George Mc Kenna

June 16, 2012 Posted by | Bulletins | 4 Comments