A few observations on a beautiful, sunny October day….
From the window of my office I can look out and see a truck in our parking lot, with both adults and children as volunteers, receiving bags of food donations to be delivered to Catholic Parish Outreach. It’s the gospel made real, it’s the miracle of the loaves and the fishes brought to Raleigh, it’s a gesture of Christian charity that speaks to the generosity of this parish. Your donations help people who are hungry in our city, and we thank you for it.
Early last Sunday morning on the radio, I heard an interview with Mary Karr, who has written three memoirs including one called “Lit” which I read years ago. In the memoir she writes about her addiction to alcohol and how later in life, she was drawn to become Catholic. In the interview last week, she described what it’s like to be a person of faith in a culture that dismisses faith easily; she tells about friends who ask her why she prays, or why she even believes at all. And her response is: sure, sometimes it does seem hard to hold onto religious belief, sometimes we all ask the question, where is God in the world? And she went on to say that prayer, or faith, is “daring to hope.” Try it, she says. Make a commitment to prayer for thirty days and see what happens. She’s a witness to what it’s like to hit bottom, to be held by an addiction, and yet to be open to receiving a kind of healing grace. “Lit” has a rawness about it, and is ultimately a deeply beautiful story.
Thank you to Fr. Michael Calabria who gave a presentation last Sunday night about the encounter between St. Francis of Assisi and the sultan in Egypt during the Crusades. One thing we took away from his talk was the importance of interfaith dialogue, that instead of emphasizing what divides us, we follow the example of St. Francis and look for what we might have in common, and seek peace. Thanks to all who helped organize the event.
Many people asked us last week what our parish was doing to help in hurricane relief for the eastern counties of the state. This weekend we are taking a second collection to support those relief efforts.
This Sunday, right after the 11:30 mass, in Clare Fellowship Hall, our preschool has its annual Harvest Moon festival which raises funds for the preschool. All are invited to attend.
Next Sunday, also after the 11:30 mass, our Franciscan School (grades K-8) hosts an Open House. Are you or is someone you know interested in a good Catholic education? Check out either of our schools which are jewels of our Franciscan family.
Blessings on your week!