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Archives Editor's Note

Serving through the struggles

By Darcy L. Fargo

Darcy Fargo

September 23, 2020

It was a great piece of advice.

When I accepted this job, but before my start date, a wise priest of our diocese gave me these words of wisdom: “When you work with priests and religious 40 hours a week, you may seem them in moments when they’re not their best and when they’re not exactly Christ-like. Don’t let that impact your faith.”

While I have great respect and appreciation for our priests, I also see that they’re human. They have bad days. They have struggles. They sin. As the wise priest correctly advised me, I’ve seen some of them when they’re not at their very best.

As I was reflecting on the impact priests have had on my life in preparation for this Priest Appreciation edition, I realized that while it sometimes frustrates me when I see priests (or religious or ministry leaders) in the moments when they’re not at their best, it’s also a source of inspiration.

Cooperating with God’s grace, our priests do amazing things. They are the conduits through which God turns water and wine into the literal body and blood of Christ. They are vehicles of God’s forgiveness in the sacrament of reconciliation. They instruct us. They guide us. They help keep the churches that nurture our faith running. They lead and participate in ministries that help the most disadvantaged among us, including the sick, the poor and the imprisoned. And that’s just a short list of the amazing work our priests do. They do much, much more.

And they do all of that even though they’re not perfect. They do all of that despite their sinfulness, bad days and struggles.

How beautiful is that? It’s a model we’re all called to follow. None of us are perfect. We all have sins, struggles and bad days, yet we can still be vehicles of God’s grace to others. In fact, we’re called to do so.

We appreciate our priests. We appreciate that they are human – with all the imperfections that go with that – and still are vehicles of the divine, and we appreciate all they do in service of God and His people.

One note: While we appreciate all our priests, there are some who aren’t mentioned in these pages. Despite best intentions, people miss deadlines. People forget to submit their notes of thanks. Though they may not be mentioned, these priests are still appreciated and loved.

Please keep our priests in your prayers and don’t forget to thank them for saying “yes” to God’s call and the countless ways they help us all.

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