Sunday, April 24, 2016

John 13:31-35

There is a song by Jocelyn Brown entitled Believe which goes something like this:

“Can’t sleep at night about the problems I  face, the friends I thought I could count on, than I  wake up in the morning knowing I will find my way; All I  have to do is believe in myself and I will find my way.”

Through out our life we have had  people telling us what to do; people send us phone calls, emails, face book, and twitter messages criticizing what we write,  the way we do ministry, and threatening to harm us.  We are always being told how wrong we are, how we are not doing any one any good, how we are not Christian, and many other things not printable. We write, we do our work, because that is our calling. The key for us is believing in ourselves.  For twenty two years our ministry has continued because first of all we believe that we are following Christ  and he is leading us, and secondly we believe in our self. We believe that our work is God’s work, and that it touches a lot of lives with infinite results. We are a pastor, we walk with people without expectation, we listen, we seek to introduce them to the Gospel, and for us the Gospel means the many faces of God, in our tradition Jesus. We introduce them to a the One beyond themselves that gives meaning in the midst of their hardships.  The One who will walk with them in the cold of the night, and of harshness of the streets. Tonight we spent time with 35 year old Jazz, whom we have known since he was 15. He has been homeless and a drug addict for over twenty three years.  We provided some socks, food, and listened, and he asked for prayer. We simply walk as a pastor with him–we are not a social worker,  just a pastor.

The past few days I have listened to individuals who are severely depressed, stressed out, filled with self doubt, and very lonely. They reach out for answers. We listened, for we know that ultimately the only answer comes from  within themselves.  We encourage them to take it a moment at a time, to mediate, to look deep within themselves, and to listen to their intuition. The most painful depression we have suffered has brought us to resurrection.

Many years ago a therapist told us that until we believed in ourselves we would have difficulty with depression and life in general.  We have learned to believe in ourselves, and in so doing we hear the words of Jesus: “I have come, come that you might have life in all of its’ fullness.” That is what ministry is about, connecting people to the abundant life, within themselves, and from there they can move mountains. Deo Gratias! Thanks be to God!

Temenos Catholic Worker

P.O. Box 642656

San Francisco, CA 94164

Fr. River Damien Sims


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