From the desk of Monsignor Charles J. Parry
Monsignor Parry is on vacation.
Seminiarian Joe Cwik is the guest columnist.
For anyone who has been up on the hill this past week (if you haven’t I highly encourage you too), you probably have noticed that the hill is in bloom. The sunflowers have begun to blossom!
One of my first jobs when I arrived at Sacred Heart was in very close proximity to the sunflower garden that I had mistaken for an empty garden of dirt; nothing was in it. Upon closer inspection Msgr. had showed me that he had planted sunflowers from seeds and the saplings, although still very small, had begun to sprout. If he hadn’t said anything I’d have smashed them (by accident of course) without ever realizing it. Over time, as I worked and walked by the garden, I watched these tiny saplings grow, grow, and grow seeming to grow taller by the minute. Now some at a height that challenges my own, I look at them at eyelevel. Msgr. must have planted some ‘good seed.’
In today’s reading Jesus teaches us that the kingdom of Heaven is ‘like a man who sowed good seed in His field.’ I’m sure the kingdom of Heaven is a place filled with great beauty but not simply by flowers but by radiant souls of the just. The Gospel explains further that the good seed is sown from the Son of Man, Jesus Himself, and the seed sprouts into the children of God, us! God plants the seed of our faith in Baptism; whether we were just quite literally a little ‘sprout’ at the time or at a time later in our life, God looks with excitement to see how we grow and the fruit which we will produce.
As a sunflower fights against the strong winds of the evening summer thunderstorms and battles against the weeds, so too do we face challenges. Yet we do so not alone but by the grace of God. God is not a distant God but One who wishes to play an intimate part. The warming glow of the sun strengthens the plant yet is far away. Our God too, through the working of the Holy Spirit strengthens the body and nourishes the soul. God desires to grant each of us the grace to grow and be fruitful but we must receive it, we must as Pope John Paul II said “Open, I say open wide the doors for Christ!” St. John Paul II, pray for us!