Weekly Reflection~from Melissa's desk
Eighteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

 I’ve made a circuitous route in my journey to Sacred Heart, although you might say it’s been a continuous path. My parents were married here by Father Shaughnessey in 1951. The first thing my mother asked me when I told her where I worked was “Do they still have the altar with the Last Supper on the front?”

Of course, some things have inevitably changed over time. The one thing that never changed was my mother’s faith. She raised all eight of her children grounded in a firm Catholic belief, solid as a rock. Our dad was a convert, but also a devoted practicing Catholic. A man of his time, he was certainly the paterfamilias, but still deferred in most areas of faith to our mother, who walked the talk, as they say. I grew up with daily rosaries, Catechism, Lives of the Saints, and the Sacraments in due course. Our family may have moved to follow work, but the one constant that remained was the deep belief at home, wherever we called home. Not all of us siblings remained in the Church, but I know our mother has never ceased praying for us—all of us. It’s good knowing we have that going for us, at least!

One of the first things I did when I had the chance was to look up my parents’ wedding records. It’s strange, the feeling of connection one experiences when viewing old handwritten script that digital records can’t convey: this happened and was recorded by a human hand on this date. Prior to that, my mother and my father were two separate young people, but after this moment in time, they were joined in Christ and are responsible for eight children, twenty-one grandchildren, and an ever-increasing population of great-grandchildren. I can’t help but think: what times they’ve seen, turbulent and peaceful, through the better part of the last century!

My Dad passed away in 1992 and Mom lives on the other side of the state now. She’s in her eighties, and not well. I need to take her some photographs, to show her how the south-side of her early years has changed. I want her to know that the church she attended as a young woman is still vibrant, as full of the Holy Spirit and fellowship in Christ as it was back then. And I’m ever grateful to God to be allowed a part in that fellowship, as well.

Yours in Christ,

Melissa Johnson