During last Thursday’s send-off Mass, Fr. Bill Byrne gave us some wise advice on being “normal." For instance, he encouraged us to “Read the sports page, or the style section.”
(My idea for getting free newspapers is to go to gas stations and ask if they have any of the previous day’s newspapers left over. They’re not going to sell them anyway, right?)
“And if you come upon a corn cob museum, go into it.”
Rather than solely being people of religion, if we are also people of culture, then we can bring religion to the culture.
Fr. Bill continued, “For God's sake, smile!"
I guess it makes a lot of sense that if we come across as “normal” and level-headed we’ll be more effective evangelists. Fr. Bill encouraged us, as Missionaries of the Eucharist, to be like the bread and wine that become the Eucharist - “down to earth” like the bread and bearing the “joy of the Lord” that the wine represents.
This reminds me of the afternoons during my senior year in high school when I’d wrestle over whether to stop at Sts. Peter and Paul – only two blocks from our house – for a quick visit with Jesus on my way home. Something inside of me was drawn to the peace of Blessed Sacrament proximity, but I agonized over whether voluntary church visits equated me with a pious freak.
But you know, stopping in for those five minutes of quality time with the Big Guy wasn’t unreasonable at all. If I believe what I say I believe - that the Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity, of the Savior of the World resides in that Tabernacle, available for our hello – isn’t that visit a perfectly normal thing to do?
**** Also, Wednesday night, Fr. Dominic from the Dominican House of Studies, gave us a talk on spiritual warfare. At the end of a whole list of things we could do to beat the Devil was: maintain a sense of humor. Many saints were great at it – one of my patrons, St. Philip Neri, was one of the most renowned for it. Staying light-hearted can help us resist the temptations come with daily irritations.
So, we’re aiming for at least one good Catholic joke good a day. If you know any, please send them our way at contact@MissionariesOfTheEucharist.org. Thanks!