A Day in Two Places

Yesterday I spent time both at Immaculate Conception Church and Our Lady of the Lakes at St. Januarius’ Church.

I went to Immaculate Conception where I will become the pastor on June 26th to met with the current pastor and take a tour of the facilities.  It began with lunch with Fr. Leo and Sr. Edna and conversation about the parish.  After lunch, Fr. Leo gave me a tour of the church, office, school, and rectory.

While I was there for a little over two and a half hours, this is really just the beginning of getting to know the parish and the staff.  It will take a while for me to get to know the parish and parishioners.  It is going to take a lot of listening on my part to get to know the parish.  I will need to listen to the parishioners, the committees, and the staff.  Most importantly, I have to listen to God.  For me, being a pastor isn’t about getting my way.  It is about leading the parish according to God’s Will.  That means listening to everyone involved, praying in conversation with God, and then making a decision that seeks to help all involved grow in their relationship with God.  All this being said, from the tour and the conversation, I continue to believe that this is where God is leading me.

That was my afternoon.  From there I drove to St. Januarius’ Church in Naples for the Sacrament of Confirmation for the children of Our Lady of the Lakes.  While I did concelebrate for the Mass, I did not need to be there but I chose to be there to show my support for the children that were receiving Confirmation.  Being a priest means helping the people deepen their relationship with our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ.  Being there for the important moments like the Sacraments is a vital part of that.  Now, I can’t be everywhere.  Part of being a good pastor will be to set priorities.

Do you rely on God to help you set priorities in your own life?  We need to look beyond our own wants and needs and look at the world with eyes of faith.


Fr. Jeff


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