By Deacon Sal Lema
Lent…is here. Christmas is over. I missed Christmas — literally! Therefore, I want to thank all those who prayed for my recuperation during the months of December and January. I quickly found out how hard it is to maneuver in a wheelchair, then use a walker, and finally a cane, and the many days of physical therapy as my sprained knee ligaments healed. Blessed by all of you and my loving wife Beth who was a great nurse during my days of healing, I have mostly recovered and look forward to serving you again.
Before I continue, I must say a few words about our writing staff. From the consulting editor Lou Allocco to the writers, especially Alice Huth-Derrah, who reached out to many, and even our out of -state writer Becky Schlofner; all came through with their work while I was a couch potato, sitting on the sidelines so to speak. I have nothing but gratitude for all the writing staff who kept the newsletter cranking during my absence. Great job team!
My setback gave me plenty of time to think about the phrase from Matthew’s gospel 25:13, “Keep Awake therefore; for you know neither the day nor the hour in which the Son of Man is coming.” Yep, I had too much time on my hands, just sitting with my knee elevated doing a lot of praying and a lot of thinking. If God came tomorrow, would I be ready? If He took me at night, would my soul be pure? Had I served others more than myself? Is it too late to change my life? Can I still make a difference? All this was circling in my thoughts as I sat on the side waiting and hoping for the opportunity to begin again. Now, I am walking and moving around mostly like before. I can stop thinking and start acting. For Lent is here. It is not a time to reduce what you do, but rather to increase what you do. You can stop eating excess treats but increase your giving to St. Vincent DePaul. You can stop saying no when asked, and volunteer for that ministry you never tried. How about increasing your volunteer hours at a ministry you are now a part of? When asked for assistance, say “Yes” first. We all know that the day will come when we will spend more time on the sidelines asking ourselves if we have done what God asked us to do. Don’t hesitate. Do it now, while you still can.