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Conversation Corner
John Vianney: The Saint Who Read Souls at a Glance--March 2003

Share a positive experience you have had with a priest, or how a priest has helped you.


Date: 3/7/2003 10:40:30 PM
Name or Pseudonym: One Parishoner
Subject: Pastor is Doing God’s Work

I moved to a new community 2 years ago. The pastor in my new parish is a humble man from Ireland. He says that he would have likely been a shepherd in rural Ireland, if he had not been given the opportunity to study to become a priest in the United States.

I have no doubt that he would have been a good shepherd. But, I feel so blessed to be able to listen to this priest speak to us about the difficult issues. Over the past year he has repeatedly addressed the issue of clergy abuse. If anything controversial occurs, I am confident that he will give a Catholic perspective in a homily at all Masses.

I have noticed how he is skilled at helping less experienced priests grow in their roles.
I have also noticed that many, many parishoners are involved in ministries within our parish. There are hundreds of parishoners who are involved with the liturgy, over 100 minister to the sick, over 100 volunteers who provide for the non-medical needs of people who are alone and in need of help. It is the pastor who leads. He has a huge following of "sheep."

I am still astounded by how the church, a large church, is full at all masses, all the time. The church was full for an 8am Ash Wednesday service. There were 3 other services offered. The church was full (like Easter) on Thanksgiving Day. All scheduled masses are full. I have not seen low attendance at any mass that I have attended in the past 2 years.

Our pastor is a man of integrity, a man of great faith, who speaks the Word of God and lives by the Word of God. 3,500 Catholic families are blessed to know this man as our pastor.

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