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Arkansas Catholic
Little Rock, Arkansas
October 27, 1991     Arkansas Catholic
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October 27, 1991

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'" "'7'" " ",'; ' 7~; 7. ' " , ' ARKANSAS CATHOLIC OCTOBER 27, 1991 PAGE 3 Dear Editor:. in to the recent ardde in the Catholic in regard to holding during the Our Father:. Jesus taught us the greatest command- of all is to love one another. To me, hands with the person next to you the Our Father is an expression of love for one another mid unity of the erltire Church as we prepare to receive the body and blood of our Lord Jesus I respect tile writer's wishes that she does riot want to hold hands; however, I do not ~gree with her terms "bummers" and "do- ~0Oders" for those of us that believe it is an act of C~-u'istian love to hold hands mid share ~ith another in conummal prayer. I thank ~ for the "hmld-holding" "do- gt~lers" in our church. Sue Farrar North little Rock I _ar E o= ~ Thursday, Oct. 10, Brenda (;herry from 0nficello and I were married in the chapel t St.Joseph's Regional Health Center. We e known each other for 13 years but ~ly six months ago derided to get married Rev. John Dietzen am a life-long Catholic and always bt~ught the feast of All Saints was to aor all the canonized saints. Recently we were told in a catechu- men class that the feast was to honor all e people in heaven, even our parents Who have died If this i " '" k_ s true, it s a ~autiful thought, but what is the ~hUrch's idea? It is clear from ~e earliest centu- ~es of Christianity that the intention ~f this feast was to On6r all those Who are in heaven with God. It started as a way of honoring those Illany martyrs whose very existence was I~erhaps unknown to the Church, but Whose names were known only to God. By the fifth century, the celebration Oil ~, the first Sunday after Pentecost) in- Vaded non-martyrs as well, and became "~tOWn as the Sunday of the Nativity of ~ll Saints, nativity meaning the day of qeath, of birth into eternal life. As the prayers and preface of the feast ~f All Saints make obvious, this contin- ties to be the significance of our All Saints Celebration. ti It may help to note that the canoniza- 0it process as we know it is only several ~ilturies old. Before that, for many hun- ~reds of years saints became "official" by ~heanhr~s~t ~f ~l~l~hl~ fl~ee~i oe~ oa~r~g In SOme ways the feast reaches even to Who are still alive on earth. St. Paul, in "one of these days soon." I was recently hospitalized after a heart attack and we mentioned our plans to the nurses. Within six hours we had an after- & IL@@t{ noon candlelight ceremony attended by hospital employees and guests, with an or- ganist, a photographer, and two best wishes cakes from their cafeteria. Brenda and I care for each other a great deal and when the Sisters offered the chapel, we decided to get married right away. Our thanks go out to all the people at St. Joseph's and to Dr. Clawrence Lovell who permitted me to be taken to the courthouse for the marriage license by my brother-in- law, Mike Kilston. Also to Rev. Charlie Cham- bers, a retired non-denominational minis- ter in Hot Springs, for performing the marriage ceremony on such short notice. We will never be able to repay the Sisters of Mercy or everyone at St.Joseph's for their charitable generosity, but we want them to know we thank them from the bottom of our hearts. According to the National Register, the "Bailey family has been in Hot Springs for over 100 years. Jessie Bailey is the father of Richard Dale Bailey, 12, a student at Central Junior High in Hot Spring Hot Springs ,dated photo, page 50 @BEIX IYIWII his letters, refers to the Christians to whom he is writing as "saints." The word comes from the Latin sancti, holy ones. For him, as for the Church in its lit- urgy even today, those who believe the good news of Christ, who are united in baptism and faith to him, and who work for the coming of his kingdom, are al- ready in some way God's holy ones. (See for example Sunday Preface I and Eu- charistic Prayer IV.) To that degree at least, the feast of All Saints extends to all who are still on this life's journey, but who are attempting to live faithfully in the life and grace of Christ. Some time ago, you responded to a Bishop Edward Fitzgerald Filo Opinion columns for Viewpoint 500 words single topic photo of author ARKANSAS CATHOLIC Post Office Box 7417 Little Rock, AR, 72217 Fr. William Gould Jer. 31:7-9 Heb. 5:1-6 Mark 10:. 46-52 "Wow!" exclaims the op- timist in near-ecstasy. God's promises sound so great! The pessimist is not so sure. "I'll need some proof," he mutters grudgingly, is pretty cheap." The despair- ing person says nothing at all - he has not even heard God speak. Today's Scriptures speak to all three. Jeremiah and his people had suffered cataclysm and devastation. Enemies had laid waste their country. The people had picked through its smoking ruins, stumbled over the debris and rubble, then had marched dead-eyed and despairing into exile. Jeremiah reminded them that they had "departed in tears" but he also assured them that this would not be a phrase chiseled on their nation's gravestone. He said that theirs was not a time for epitaphs, but for hope! "Shout for joy," God had told him. He had even used the word "exult" and had called on them to give praise. The prophet shared that God would deliver them. Yahweh had promised to console and guide them, to care for their He wants to free us from every imag- inable bondage. every need - He had even promised to restore everything that they had thought lost forever. "I am a father to Israel, Ephraim is my first- born," The pessimist snorts at this. He reminds us again that words cost nothing. question about the "Son of Man" in the God points back into history. He kept His Gospels. I suggest you missed a chance promises to Israel. But He also gave us today's gospel passage. Through ........ to clarify the non-sexist use of the word it He seems to say, "Let me show you what I can do! Let me give you a real4ife example." also b d Bartimaeus was a beggar. He was fin . His life was one of darkness and poverty. His days were lived around the ch/nk of pennies falling into his begging bowl and each evening s ragged crusts of bread. Each day probably seemed more hopeless than the one before. But then Jesus walked into his life - and things would never be the same ~ "Son of David, have pity on me! "I want to see. These requests "man" in Scripture. You made it clear that the word means human person. But isn't this a good ex- ample of language problems for us? As a pastor myself, I'm glad I learned to be aware of how these things strike differ- ent people. ,Thanks for writing. I did miss an op- portunity which, in fact, would have strengthened one of the points I was trying to make, that the tide primarily expresses the truth that Jesus was and is truly one of us, a member of our human family; not that he was a male. In both Latin and the original Greek, in the phrase "Son of Man" in Matthew 9:6 or John 8:28, for example, the pels always use the generic word (homo or anthmp0s) that can apply to any person. Unfortunately, we don't have a generic word that normally lends itself to smooth use in English. CNS were simply put, but was Bartimaeus asking the impossible? No, because God continually promises us what He promised ancient Israel "Be on your way!'Jesus commanded lovingly, Wour faith has healed you." Immediately the blind beggar was no longer blind. Our passage from Hebrews reminds us that Jesus Christ is our God-given qaigh priest". He understands our weaknesses and our needs; He is able to deal patiently with us. Bartimaeus' story dearly shows that St. Paul is notjust talking theory and theology - he is describing the reality that gave rise to it all. God makes the same promises to us that He made long ago to Israel. He tells us in love- filled tones that He is our Father, that He wants to free us from every imaginable bondage. He wants to bring light where there has only been darkness, hope where there was only despair. Does the optimist continue to rejoice? Of course he does. Does the pessimist give more credence to God's message? Maybe - but this is the way of pessimists. Does the person trapped in despair look up with a glimmer of hope in his eyes? I certainly hope so! Today's message is directed especially to him.