Today is Friday, July 3rd, the Feast of St. Thomas, Apostle. The reading for Morning Prayer today comes from Ephesians 2:19-22:
You are strangers and aliens no longer. No, you are fellow citizens of the saints and members of the household of God. You form a building which rises on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the capstone. Through him the whole structure is fitted together and takes shape as a holy temple in the Lord; in him you are being built into this temple, to become a dwelling place for God in the Spirit.
In the days of “status quo ante” at St. Peter’s those words would ring very true. Coming from the spiritually impoverished Diocese of Boise, the Diocese of Arlington and St. Peter Catholic Church represented to us the return to a vast and verdant oasis of Faith. My wife and I were “strangers and aliens no longer.”
But that was the “status quo ante.” As of June one year ago, with the arrival of our current pastor, we entered the world of “status quo post” or “status quo nunc.” In the last 99 posts, my wife and I have chronicled the “desertification” of St. Peter’s portion of the oasis and how we have been made to feel once again as “strangers and aliens.”
We know in our hearts that we remain “fellow citizens of the saints and members of the household of God.” That is why we write these posts for our fellow “Sheep in Exile.” We know that the “temple” that is “a dwelling place for God in the Spirit” is “a holy temple in the Lord” and not confined to a single parish or diocese. Nevertheless, we yearn for a return to the “status quo ante” when we can be physically reunited with our “fellow citizens” who are our neighbors in Rappahannock County and were once part of St. Peter Catholic Church.
And that is our prayer to St. Thomas the Apostle in this Post #100 – That the Sheep in Exile may be reunited under a caring pastor so that we may come together at the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass at St. Peter’s and truly say we “are strangers and aliens no longer.”