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For the Sheep in Exile – Bulletin 2016-01-31

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Here is Bulletin_2016-01-31. There was a flyer in the bulletin that was too large for scanning. Please go to Bishop’s Lenten Appeal for details.

Analysis and Commentary:

1. Oh, the Uncertainty, Again: Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday last week were scheduled to be Communion Services. We had speculated that it might be time for Father’s annual ski trip. We also tentatively projected that the Blizzard of 2016 might force Father to cancel his plans. Apparently, it did. We know for sure that he celebrated Mass at St. Peter’s on Monday. Now, the new bulletin says that on both Monday and Wednesday there will be Communion Services at 8: 30 AM. It also notes:

There will be a Communion Service on Wednesday, February 3, St. Blaise Day, with blessing of the throats.

So, there are no blizzards predicted for next week and it looks like Father might actually be out there on the slopes this week. My beautiful spouse often wonders about that. She knows how much a successful skier depends on strong, flexible knees. If that is indeed the case, why does Father find it impossible to bend his knee and genuflect before the Most Blessed Sacrament?

2. New Cronies – Birds of a Feather: A major portion of the Pastor’s Piece was devoted to the following:

Hal Hunter, a very active member of the Rappahannock community, has brought to my attention the need for drivers to bring people to Cancer treatment. The program is called: Road to Recovery:

“Once or twice a month Hal drives a cancer patient for treatment at the Fauquier Hospital or the Cancer Center. His wife and Hal know both facilities well. She survived stage 4 lymphoma five years ago. Driving other cancer patients is one way to give back. Hal drives for an American Cancer Society program called the Road to Recovery. It used to be active in the County, then died. At present, Hal is the only Road to Recovery driver in the County. We need more drivers because the hospital added a Center for Cancer Care. The patient load is increasing, which increases the need for drivers. You get to specify how often you will drive, on what days, how far you will go, and so on. You can do all this online at http://www.cancer.org/involved/volunteer/road-to-recovery-volunteers, or you can attend a meeting at the Library on February 1st at 3:00pm. The program will be explained, questions answered and have signup forms. Hope to see you there.”

Thought 1: My sister, my brother, and my father all died of cancer. There is no way you will hear me criticize the intent of the Road to Recovery.

Thought 2: Father has found yet another highly visible, local “community activist” with whom to share his time and causes. As might be suspected, this activist is more strongly affiliated with the Rappahannock County Democratic Committee and liberal social agenda than with more conservative causes. Perhaps this example illustrates my point. Birds of a feather do flock together. Because we are still new to the area, perhaps you will let me know if I’m off base here.

Thought 3: My sister was visited frequently by a priest prior to her death. My father grew closer to God and his Catholic Faith in the years before he died and he was ready when cancer came. Through God’s grace, my brother finally opened up his heart to God after being away from the Church for decades. He received the Last Rites before he died. When I think of cancer patients, I think of the Four Last Things – Death, Judgement, Heaven or Hell. That strengthens my resolve to choose the real “Road to Recovery”.

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