We had no priest for morning Mass yesterday. It's normal for Fr. Dave to fly in at the last minute, but by ten after seven, it was clear that he would not be coming. The silence in the church was heavy, not sweet, perhaps because there was an underlying sense of worry. Was he sick? Hurt? Hasn't the news been full of stories of priests who didn't show up for Mass only to be found (dead) afterward? I can't believe I actually let that ugly thought out of my head and onto this computer! Never have I prayed for Fr. Dave so much as I did on that Friday morning in church! My prayers were answered in the sweetest way, as Fr. Dave was not dead, he simply failed the check the Mass schedule upon his return from retreat. Thankfully, Sr. Doris was there to lead us all in a prayer service.
Discomfort filled my soul
as I stood at the Ambo,
Lectionary in front of me,
page turned to the Gospel.
"Read it," she had said.
"How can I read these words,
that belong to the priest?"
I scanned the faces in the pews,
look of hunger for God's word
lay heavily upon each.
Two smiling little faces in the front pew
gleamed with pride for their mother.
"They shouldn't be smiling," I thought.
I swallowed my worry
and proclaimed His words.
At the end of the communion service
I prayed that we would never be without
a priest again.
"The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few. Therefore beseech the Lord of the harvest to send laborers into the field." Lk 10:2