God is Good!

Seek the Lord while He may be found!

My Magnificent Mind

One of my many blessings – Holding hands and saying prayers with my great grand niece Grace before our weekly lunch.

Downtown Chicago has one of the most beautiful skylines in the world.  Being in the middle of the country many are drawn to this city of ours.  The Chicago skyline has continuously changed over the course of my life.  Each year it seems that a new skyscraper is going up, changing the fabric of the city.  Before a shovel full of dirt is dug for one of these splendid buildings, skilled architects have all the blueprints ready.  No blueprints. . . . no buildings.

St. Paul, in his letter to the Philippians, gives the blue print for a house of peace in our spirit: “Your thoughts should be directed to all that is true, all that deserves respect, all that is honest, pure, decent, virtuous . . .”

Followers of Christ can easily lose sight of the power of the human mind.  Truly we are what we think!  If a person feels unhappy, then one can look immediately to the mind and to what thoughts thrive there.  Our thoughts make us what we are.

Many years ago, I remember playing a particularly disappointing game of golf.  Ordinarily this poor performance would have lowered my spirits.  My day would have been spoiled, but instead I turned my thoughts to the power of the mind, and positive thinking.  I began to concentrate of those things that I could be grateful for, instead of my poor performance.  “I can see the clouds and the beautiful blue sky. . . I can hear the voices of my family and friends. . . I have the physical strength to walk and swing my clubs.”  This grateful attitude and these uplifting thoughts chased my gloom away and gave new joy to the day!

The game of golf is much like the game of life.  Perhaps recently, in the playing of the game of life, we have had some “poor scores”, like losing our job, or being demoted, a weak performance in school or some financial reverses.  We can allow these “poor scores” to steal away our happiness.

However, we can do what I did on the golf course.  We can bring happy thoughts into our minds.  Some could be: “I have food to eat. . . I have a place to sleep. . . My health remains good.”  We will have peace of heart, courage to continue playing this fascinating game of life.

At 98, my blessings continue, though I have lost many of the pleasures I enjoyed years ago.  No longer can I golf or drive a car.  My mother and father, brothers and sister, and all the priests I was ordained with in 1944, have all gone to the everlasting joy of eternal life.  But each day, I remind myself to be grateful for what I do have.

These days put a guard at the doorway of our mind.  Allow only thoughts that are true, virtuous, pure, decent and honest to enter.  Thank you St. Paul!


Fr. George Mc Kenna

August 12, 2017 Posted by | Bulletins | , , , , | 11 Comments

Prayer, The Key To Holiness

The Lord’s Prayer, by James Tissot, Via Wikipedia

Years ago I had lunch with a priest friend, a Father John, a man of my own age.  Born in Yugoslavia, Father John had spent over 3 years in a Russian Siberian prison camp, his only crime being that he was a Catholic Priest.  Prison rules forbade possession of anything religious, such as rosaries, prayer books and pictures.

Not able to offer Mass, still the priest enjoyed the freedom of raising his mind and heart to God oftentimes each day.  When he came out of Siberia, he was in excellent spirits, despite the miserable food, the inhuman treatment and the harsh cold.

At lunch that day, Father John said to me, “I saw many prisoners give up on life because they refused to turn to God, or they didn’t know how to pray.  Prayer”, he went on, “made the difference between life and death for me.”   I remember thinking to myself that day, “Here sitting across from me is a living example of the power of prayer.”

Through the years, I have found the practice of prayer to God the best of all adventures.  Through this conversation with our Creator, weak, human beings bring His Power, Goodness and Beauty into their lives.  Every man, woman and child can life their minds and hearts to the Lord.

Temptations to evil constantly make us conscious of our human weaknesses.  Only by prayer to the Lord and His Mother Mary, can we succeed in turning away from alluring attractions.  In such time, I say, “Lord Jesus, and Mary our mother, help the poor, the sick and they dying.”  I distract myself from the evil by asking help for others.

Prayer makes the difference between despair and a strong hope in the beauty of life.  Father John, the ex-prisoner of Siberia, helped me to believe in the power of prayer.

Fr. George Mc Kenna

August 11, 2017 Posted by | Bulletins | , , , | 1 Comment