I Was Hungry for Truth, and You Fed Me


(from the October, 2018 newsletter)

Business at the Shrine this season was very slow. There were a few weeks that were better, but for the most part sales were not good. But giving away Good Ground books and 100’s of CD’s was always possible. Our world does not know that they are really hungry for Truth; hungry for God, for Whom their hearts were made. But their spiritual appetite has been dulled because of a dullness that comes from being immersed in worldly things and in sin. Therefore, many good people will walk through the Shrine store and buy very little. But when I offer them Good Ground and the CD’s about Bishop Baraga, about Fatima and about the Rosary, and give them the little rosaries I ‘got on sale’, they are delighted. Now, tell me…what is more important? Selling some little thing or giving them something that might begin a relationship with God, or deepen their relationship? But, of course, for paying bills, selling things is very important. And if I don’t sell much, then your donations help me to freely distribute these holy things without worrying about running out of money.

So I thank you so very much, those of you who have generously sent me donations over the summer and fall and winter. If you haven’t received your thank you, you will when I close for the season and can finally do all the things that are neglected for five months.

How I wish I had my own money that I could throw in as I did for ten years to keep things going. But now I can’t throw much in and must depend on Jesus and on you. I have about 1000 people on my mailing list and one day I was thinking…if only each person would send $100 a year, I would have more than enough to do all that I do and even fix some things at the Shrine. Of course, some people on my mailing list have very little extra money and even $10 a month is too much to give. But there are many, I’m sure, who can give $100, or even more, each year. When I am giving a talk on Gospel simplicity and looking at the capital sin of greed, which is ‘an inordinate (out of order) desire for worldly things’, I will ask the people one question. It is, “How much do you spend on yourself?” and I could add, “How much are you saving to spend on yourself in the future?” If you give yourself very few luxuries and have not enough to even pay your bills, then your first donation must be to your parish, which feeds your faith. If there is a little extra, I would even appreciate a dollar or two, which some people are kind enough to send me. But otherwise, send your prayers.

But, if you are able to go on vacations, go out to eat, have cell phones with big data plans, direct TV, many toys for the grandchildren, many clothes for everyone, etc. Then you might have enough to send $100 or more to help me bring the Gospel to others. I forgo all those things, of course, nor do I even desire them, but everything I have is given to bringing others to God and to our faith and to knowing His Goodness, Truth and Beauty. I do not put any names on plaques for big donors since Our Lord encouraged you to give so your right hand doesn’t know what your left hand is doing. There are just a few who are blessed with more money who realize that this work is worthy of a generous donation and when Jesus inspires those people, I sometimes have tears. Tears of relief, at times, and tears of gratitude. I know this year some of you who love Bishop Baraga are giving to the Baraga Association for their education center. I hope you will have a little left for this work.

Many of you give, and often, and I am so grateful. You mustn’t feel badly you can’t give more…you must just pray that God will stir up others to be more generous. I’m so sorry to be asking you for money. And I know I wouldn’t run out of money if I didn’t give away so many holy things. If this were a soup kitchen, you would understand my spending so much money to feed the starving poor. But I see a starvation that is much deeper, and is fed so little. Many of the people who come to the Shrine store are un-churched and they may never at another time receive these little holy things. So please help me feed the starved-for-truth poor of our world. Every other year sales at the Shrine have always provided extra for bills to get me through summer and fall. But this year was different and God must provide through you.

If you would like to give a donation to the Missionaries of the Liturgy, you may send a check to: 302 E Margaret St. Iron Mountain, MI 49801.












Categories: Bishop Baraga Shrine,Featured

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