I have only been to St. Ladislaus one time in my life for mass. It was Marylou and Ken’s wedding about 25 years ago. I had forgotten how quaint and comfortable it is with its big bold blue ceiling and beautiful stained glass windows depicting Jesus’ life in all the stories we know.
The priest began the homily with “With God, all things are possible.” He stuck with this message in a few different ways. Interestingly enough, it is also my key chain that a religious education student had given me about 6 years ago. I think it was from when Vincent was in 8th grade!
As much as I love the statement and want to believe it, I have to be honest! When the priest asked, “How often do we truly believe this “God can make all things possible’ and how often do we overlay doubt onto the statement?” I have to be honest.
Truth be told, my first inclination is to doubt it rather than believe it wholeheartedly. At a more childish and tangible level, I know it is not true. He can’t let me retire right now and keep leading the lifestyle I am used to. He can’t make me an instant millionaire so that I can travel the world without a care. He can make all difficult times in our family’s life easy. He cannot promise me my parents will be healthy forever. He cannot bring my father-in –law back to our family. Even “with God” these things are not possible.
So I have to be more fair in my judgment, I think. Does “all things” really mean “all things”? Can God actually DO ANYTHING?? Or….does he have to use the human (and fallible) hands and feet and minds and hearts of the people on this physical planet to help make “all possible things…possible”. That might be a little more fair way of saying it…..at least in my head!
- Family turmoil can be healed and hurts can be forgiven….when people believe it to be possible and work towards healing and forgiveness.
- Physical Hunger can be abolished when people work to heal political policies that keep certain parts of the world unable to attain food for children and their families. Only neighbors can be sure their neighbors have what they need.
- Diseases can be cured when doctors have what they need and individual people do their part to keep their bodies healthy and their minds informed about treatment and Doctors use the talents God gave them to make the right decisions for the patients.
- World peace?? Who knows……that will absolutely not happen until people decide that each human has the right to live in a world of peace, free of political unrest, free of terrorism, free of “tribal wars” that have been happening for thousands of years.
I think the phrase “With God, all things are possible” also assumes that we know what the best plan for ourselves and other people is. In fact, we may not know what the best plan is…and in God’s plan….what he wants to have happen is what is possible. Sometimes, we have to just give it up and let it work out the way things are supposed to. Then…opportunities or “good fortunes” become possible for each of us. Maybe with God all possibilities are possible. That might be a better way of saying it.
Leaving the church a woman said, “Debi? Is that you?” I said yes and told her I did not recognize her. She laughed and said it was “Mrs. Haywood”. I used to babysit her kids and then had one of them as a student my first year as a teacher at St. Joseph School in South Norwalk!! Then she was a school nurse for my kids!! I haven’t seen her in about 15 years. We caught up for a few minutes. It was nice to be recognized by someone from so long ago. It really made me feel so welcome and comfortable in a church I hadn’t been to in so long; especially since there were only 7 people there at mass. After being spotted and sharing a few moments with someone from “my past”, it made me wonder……….
Who knows? Maybe…with God, a lot of things are possible.