God is Good!

Seek the Lord while He may be found!

A Classic Time To Express Love

Part of my graduating class from St. Theodore, 1933. That's me, top row, third from the right!

Part of my graduating class from St. Theodore, 1933. That’s me, top row, third from the right!

Another Valentine’s Day has come upon us.  Hallmark Cards rejoices on such a day since people make this a big card buying occasion.  Valentine’s Day, named after an early saint in our Church, gives many a shy person a chance to express love and affection towards others.

Back on Valentine’s Day, 1933, as an Eighth Grader in St. Theodore’s School, I came into my classroom after lunch.  To my surprise, I found a tiny, candy heart, no bigger than a postage stamp, on my desk.  Written on this precious gift were the words . . . “I Love You”.

My boyish spirits went sky high.  Someone in my class cares for me, I cried out to myself.  Which one of the five or six girls did this, I wondered.  That didn’t matter.  I must be worth something.  After all these years, this experience stays with me to raise my spirits and prove to me the power of those words . . . “I Love You.”

When victims of 9/11 were cell-phoning their last words to family members, at the end, they said . . . “I Love You.”  Hopefully, they had spoken those precious words many times in the past.

In the past, when friends said to me . . . “I Love You” . . . my only response in shyness, was, “Oh, thank you.”  I falsely thought that a priest is not supposed to say . . . “I Love You.”  People might take it in the wrong way.  Now, with the onset of some wisdom, I answer . . . “I Love You Too!”

In recent years, I found out the name of the classmate responsible for my life long memory of Valentine’s Day, 1933.  Luckily, I didn’t find this out until now.  She was the sweetest, most charming girl in the class.  Through her life she has retained all those beautiful traits.

Are we going to be miserly in using those powerful words of uplift and encouragement . . . “I Love You” . . . even after Valentine’s Day has gone by?  Leave a life long memory in the minds and hearts of some other struggling fellow pilgrims with the sincere use of those life changing words . . . “I Love You!”

In conclusion, I love all my Blog followers and readers for taking time to bring the above message into their hearts.  Life might never be the same!

Father George McKennacandy heart

February 14, 2015 Posted by | Bulletins | , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Teach Us How To Pray

Quigley North Chapel

Quigley North Chapel

One late afternoon, some 82 years ago, as a First Year student, I went into the magnificent Gothic Style Chapel of Quigley Seminary on the North Side.  In the semi-darkness of twilight, a young priest, then a member of the Seminary Faculty, knelt in prayer, his head bent down.  Seeing him praying so quietly and peacefully, made me think . . . “This is a good idea, to talk with God and bring some of His Goodness into my life.  I want that young priest’s peace.”

In my Second Year, this same priest entered our classroom to teach us about the Gallic Wars in Latin.  This closeness to him on a daily basis increased my admiration for him and helped me to set him up as my #1 hero in my five years at Quigley.  Everything he did in the classroom possessed that spirit of peace and kindness.  Undoubtedly, his way of life came from his practice of prayer and union with God.

He treated everybody fairly.  Nothing ruffled his daily life with us, oftentimes rough and unthinking teenagers.  The passing years have not lessened my reverence for him.  He still remains my #1 hero, the inspiration of a lifetime.

The spirit of prayer which Jesus constantly practiced made Him an appealing person to His followers.  All the actions of Christ possessed those qualities of peace, fearlessness and gentleness.  His friends begged Him to teach them how to pray so they could follow His life style.  Rightfully so, they concluded that prayer gave Him that special calmness and courage in the face of suffering.

Like the Apostles, beg the Lord for this spirit of prayer.  Above all the gifts of life, the possession of tranquility and inner harmony ranks first.  A faithful follower of Christ, in admiration of His life, can raise up one’s heart joyfully in short aspirations.

Nothing will bring a person peace more quickly than a willingness to share one’s fears, doubts, and happenings of the day with the Lord.  When I used to meet my former Latin teacher, now deceased at the age of 95, Monsignor John Hayes, and tell him thanks, he would quietly smile.

Fr. George Mc Kenna

February 7, 2015 Posted by | Bulletins | , , , , , , , | 10 Comments