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He brought Jesus to me

By Darcy L. Fargo

Darcy Fargo

Sept. 29, 2021

He brought Jesus to me in the teachings he intelligently, articulately and patiently presented to me, teachings that combatted all the arguments I presented regarding why I had turned away from God and thought I was smarter than his Church. He helped me get to a point where I could be open to God’s word, God’s grace and God’s love. He helped bring me home.

He brought Jesus to me as I watched him correct my son, who had made a mistake while serving on the altar. There was no anger in him. He was smiling. He was kind. He was simply happy Jake was trying to serve, and he made Jake feel welcome, appreciated and included.

He brought Jesus to me when I wasn’t in a good place in my life. He brought Jesus’ mercy in the sacrament of reconciliation, and he brought Jesus – body and blood, soul and divinity – in the Eucharist. He brought Jesus to me in just his willingness to go out of his way to minister to me and in his calming, peaceful presence.

He brought Jesus to me by sharing his seemingly unending joy and his words of wisdom that often resonate with me, including wisdom delivered in very comical ways (“if you can’t behave, at least keep it venial” is possibly my favorite advice of the year).

So, who is he? He’s not just one person. Each “he” is a different priest of our diocese whose ministry has brought me closer to our Lord. And these are just some of the stories I could tell from my life. I’ve seen countless other times priests of our diocese have brought Jesus to me and others either literally – in the Eucharist – or figuratively through their teaching, ministry, compassion and love.

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.

I appreciate our priests. We appreciate our priests.

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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