In 1996 a car accident tore open the head of a 21-year-old Chicago boy named Peter. Peter was gravely injured, in a deep coma with sustained brain damage. The doctor’s told Peter’s family and friends that he probably would not survive, and even if he did, he would always be in a comatose state.
The gardener who spoke softly to the grieving Mary Magdalen in the garden. The stranger who walked with the despairing Disciples on the road to Emmaus. The appearance that startled the fearful Apostles hiding behind closed doors in the upper room. The cook who appeared on the shore of the lake and prepared fish for incredulous Disciples. The shepherd who pursued with determined love the lost lamb.
This is an extremely rich Gospel. It helps to remember that it was written in a time of trauma for the Church. It opens with the Disciples at sea. They are confused, they are lost, they are empty. They are still reeling from the death of their Master. They do not seem to know what to do with themselves, so in a kind of reflex action they revert to their old trade, fishing.
Each year the Church celebrates Doubting Thomas Day. It is a rough day for the Apostle. Not only does the poor fellow miss out on Jesus’ first appearance to His Disciples, but he tells them that they must have dreamed it, and the only way he will believe Jesus has risen is to put his fingers into the wounds of Calvary. A week later, the Lord embarrasses him with just that invitation, “Trace My wounds.”
Fr. Jose Delgado, SA, the newest Atonement Friar, realized a goal he has been pursuing for more than half a century when he was ordained to the priesthood in the Roman Catholic Church at Graymoor on Thursday, April 25, 2019.
Fr. Jim Gardiner, SA, was honored to host the 70th Wilbur Awards Ceremony in mid-April in Chicago. Since 1949, the Wilbur Awards have recognized secular media who have effectively produced content that touches on religious issues, values, and themes.
Fr. Tom Orians, SA, Fr. Jim Puglisi, SA, Fr. Jim Loughran, SA, and Fr. Jim Gardiner, SA, travelled to Washington, DC, in early April to meet with other religious leaders of various denominations for The National Workshop on Christian Unity. The only gathering of its kind on a national level, the Workshop has advanced unity and reconciliation among various Christian communities for more than 50 years.
When Judas arrived at the Garden of Olives to arrest Jesus, Jesus asked him, “Why are you here?” So today I ask you the same question: friends, why are you here after all our Church has gone through? This is the same Church you have been reading about in the headlines. This is what has been called by one newspaper the “Scandal Ridden Church.”