“There is no shortage of brussel sprouts.” That’s about all the good news I could glean from a story this weekend about what was happening in local grocery store outlets.
There are generally three things that I think reveal the true nature and character of a person. First, how do you argue with people who disagree with you? Second, what happens when you lose, or you don’t get your way? And third, how do you react to volatility and conflict?
Everybody reacts the same way when they hit the game winning homer or sinks a basket at the buzzer. People also generally respond the same way when they win an award, receive compliments or find people who think exactly like they do. So, it’s difficult to really know somebody until there’s genuine conflict. Losing and conflict reveals something important about the bright AND the darkness in our human nature.
Right now, things are NOT going to go our way. How we respond as a Catholic Community will do more to reveal our true character and nature than how we behave at liturgies or at church events. This is our opportunity to respond as a community of people who follow Christ. Now is the time to evaluate how we will live the beatitudes, the corporal and spiritual works of mercy and every commandment and doctrine. This is our time to intensify our prayer life, be generous and prioritize the needs of others.
Find ways to inject humor into the lives of the people around you. Check on the people who live in the neighborhood. Use creativity to be the solution to the challenges we are facing.
Trust the professionals who are trying to protect the most vulnerable in our society. Pray for wisdom and discernment. God will use a LOT of people during this time as beacons of hope for others. I have no doubt that our Catholic Community will rise to the occasion and be a powerful light in these times of complicated challenges and darkness.
There is no shortage of brussel sprouts. There’s also no shortage of God’s grace and bounty that will bless the communities who steer through these events together. Let’s show the world just how bright our light can shine.
Tom Lilly, Chancellor/Chief Administrative Officer