KIERNAN: God does not take a summer vacation

July 13, 2021

Photo by Josh Applegate

Without a doubt, this past year has created some of the most unique challenges for our country, society and Archdiocese.

Thanks be to God, the pandemic situation is improving, and life is gradually returning to “normal.” After a year of Zoom calls, virtual meetings and online learning, there is a temptation to just relax and unwind for a few months. However, it is important to also recognize the need to continue progressing in the journey of faith.

Just over a year ago, parish doors were shut, Masses were only available over livestream and families were challenged, more than ever, to be the essence of Church at home.

This monumental effort required innovation, persistence and creativity to be successful. The Holy Spirit dynamically worked and inspired new efforts in evangelization and catechesis.

In the summer months, it would be easy to fall back into what has been done before — pause to catch our breaths, reinstitute previous programs and assume life can go back to normal.

St. Padre Pio would caution us otherwise with his words, “He/She who does not move forward in the spiritual life is moving backwards, there is no standing still.” These words remind and challenge us to recall that there is no time for complacency. Rather, we must strive each moment of the day to move closer to the Lord.

The opportunity, then, is for us to respond to the challenge of St. Padre Pio in the best way for our parish, our families and all others with whom we cross paths. This could be a ministry of outreach; it could be new family resources; it could be a parish mission or something outside of the box.

Whatever the case may be, let us prayerfully acknowledge all that we as a Church have been through this past year, take to heart what we have learned in this time of pandemic and be inspired to share the Gospel message. God has not stopped working, and He won’t be taking this summer off, so neither should we — “let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven” (Matthew 5:16). 

Matt Kiernan is the coordinator of religious education at Epiphany of the Lord Catholic Church in Katy.