Working on a Day Meant for Play!

Happy Labor Day, Everyone!

Given Lauds is to be celebrated "in privatum" today, sleeping in was a great idea, but once the Old Saint Joseph Church bells went off at 7:30 -- the time we normally set aside for Lauds -- the much-needed sleep would be brought to an abrupt end. The only obligation I had scheduled for today was to meet with Mike, a good and decent parishioner who will be burying his wife of 25 years in our college church this Wednesday. Lola suffered with ALS disease for the past several years; not only did she live a very dignified life amidst the nastiness of Lou Gehrig's disease, but Michael has been a shining example of loyalty and faithful fidelity to his spouse "in good times and in bad." I will revisit that early morning conversation at any number of times today and in the next two days as I prepare for the Mass of Christian burial. Aside from that labor of love, the day is mine to use as I see fit. Most likely it will be spent attending to those necessary but thankless tasks including cleaning my room and cleaning out the trunk of my car. I do not get to either tasks with enough frequency as I should, but it always feels so good when the work is accomplished.

I also have some parish work to attend to today as well. I'll complete those tasks from this computer in the priory with the TV on in the background. Today I'll be tapping into my recently delivered DVDs of Father Robert Barron's "Catholicism Project" while I complete my other tasks. Father Barron is a priest of the Archdiocese of Chicago who teaches at Mundelein's Saint Mary of the Lake University (the primary seminary for Chicago and many other dioceses of the Midwest). I can't wait until his latest project fills my room with sacred depth -- he has such a clear and synthesized manner of speaking that his presentations are like "ear candy;" one truly feels great pride in our Faith as he opens up the treasure chest of the Church's jewels available and accessible for our spiritual growth. Today's unseasonably cool weather invites flannel pants and a hoodie, perfect weather for TV watching!

But today will also offer an opportunity to look forward; certainly to anticipate next weekend's Sunday homily, a wedding homily on Saturday and the Packer homily on Thursday. Through it all, I keep Saint Joseph the Worker in mind and heart, asking that he will intercede to God on my behalf amidst the work I undertake today. But on this Labor Day, coupled with the economic conditions our nation and the world is confronting, I hope and pray that Joe will intercede on behalf of the unemployed and those searching for employment. Through it all, may it be a blessed Labor Day for each and every one of us.


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