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Working through our unworthiness

By Darcy L. Fargo

Darcy Fargo

August 12, 2020

While I smiled behind my mask and responded, “no problem” to the request, my heart sank when my pastor, Father Raymond J. Moreau, asked me to serve as the lector 15 minutes prior to the start of Mass.

I don’t mind speaking in public, and I enjoy serving my parish, but I usually obsessively prepare for the Sundays when its my turn to lector. I go over the weekend readings at least seven to 10 times between Saturday night and Sunday morning. My goal is always to deliver the readings as close to perfectly as humanly possible. I absolutely hate when I stumble over a word or when a sentence I deliver doesn’t flow properly.

I hold myself to a surreal standard, a standard I would never dream of imposing on others. It’s a standard I’m also sure God doesn’t impose on me.

I’m confident God isn’t watching me lector, hearing me stumble over a word, and proclaiming me unworthy to serve Him. I’m pretty sure God knows I’m approaching the lectern with the goal of serving Him and proclaiming His word, however it comes out.

As I was thinking about that fact after Mass this Sunday, I couldn’t help but think of the interviews and discussions I had over the last two weeks with the men who were ordained by Bishop Terry R. LaValley on Aug. 1.

Several of those men noted how humbled they are by the fact that God is calling them to serve Him despite their weaknesses, sinfulness and unworthiness. They know they’re not perfect, yet they still feel called to serve our perfect God. They continue to put their trust in God to work through them and use them, use even their weaknesses, in His service.

Like it would’ve been easy for me to decline Father Ray’s request, it’s easy for all of us to say, “not me, Lord. I’m not capable. I’m not worthy,” when we feel called by the Lord. Yet when we surrender our ineptitude, unworthiness and sinfulness to God and His will, and we try to go where He calls us, beautiful things seem to happen, even if it’s something as simple as being reminded that God isn’t as tough on us as we are on ourselves.

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