dimanche, juillet 12, 2009

OK, so he's celibate

I had the most delightful, unexpected conversation yesterday.

Lost in a vast roiling sea of links about Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper and "Wafergate", I was pleased when the phone rang. For a few minutes, I could extricate myself from what seemed to be utter bemusement among Canadian politicians, commentators, and journos about whether he a. took communion at a colleague's Catholic memorial service on purpose b. took it by accident because he doesn't get the etiquette around Catholic communion or c. took the wafer on purpose and (here the "scandal") put it in his pocket.

I hope I signalled my GR readers that I found this kerfluffle on the same level of silliness as whether Obama and Sarkosy were captivated by a young woman's backside at the G-8 ceremony.

I don't think I did. To be honest, I was enjoying it too much.

Also, I'm probably the only one in America who saw almost none of the Michael Jackson service. So I had three hours in which I could pay attention to what was happening to the North.

The phone rang at the point that I worried I would never escape from my day in Canada. When I picked up the receiver, a slightly ethereal voice identified itself as Fr. Paul, from Mt. Saint Marys. He had gotten the email about my wish to chat with faculty about the Pope's encylical, Caritas in Veritate. Because he's been retired for 16 years as a prof at the Seminary, he thought I should talk to someone currently teaching ethics (which I had already done, that morning.)

Then, to my surprise, he asked me if I ever visited the Seminary (which is in Maryland). When I owned up to living in Pennsylvania, he asked me what I was reading. Did I know about the publication of Henri Nouwen's latest (posthumous) essays? Had I read weekly essays by someone (I need to look him up) who writes for a Catholic ezine out West? And what would I suggest that he read?

I was taken with Fr. Paul's open mind, intellectual acuity, and sense of humor -- not to mention his interest in my opinions.

What an unexpected gift -- it's not so hard to find common ground, if you work at it, and you want to.

4 commentaires:

norman pease a dit…

excepting the celibacy thing...sounds like good "date" material. Oh well.

There is at least one more person in the US that did not tune into the M.J. ceramonies.

Offcenter a dit…

Eh, Randy, that's very funny -- did I mention Fr. Paul is 83? ;-)

Between you and me, I don't think we missed a lot.

noorman pease a dit…

Hmmmm, maybe you need someone with the mind of an 83 yr. old friar, the body of a 40 yr. old matt damon, and the wonderment of a 4 yr. old. Shouldn't be too hard to find:)

My grand daughter will be 4 on the 15th...party on the 18th...can't wait.

mompriest a dit…

Interesting turn of events...