Suddenly, quite surprisingly, I find myself deep in despair.
Despair for my family and friends. Despair for my parish and my Catholic Church. Despair for myself, my work, my apostolate and my health, for my community and my country and my fellow human beings, for my prayer life and my faith and the souls of everyone around me.
It feels deeper and darker than times past. A part of me wonders where I can find hope. I try turning to God for that hope, my only real source in previously dark days. He says, "not now." I ask when. He responds only, "Some time."
I recently heard a story about three theologians who were discussing different translations of the Bible. The first proposed that the New American Bible was the best translation, while the second argued for the New Revised Standard Version. The third theologian spoke up: "I like my mother's translation best. She translates Scripture into action, apply to everyday life."
In our fast-paced culture and world, it's difficult to slow down the rhythm of life. We're accustomed to running to and fro with little mindfulness or time to really reflect on what we're doing: We run to cars, trains or planes. We seek to arrive on time and with little distractions on the way.
A common experience is when we're stuck in traffic or when we hear from the speaker in the airport gate announcing a flight delay -- it's as if the world has all of a sudden conspired against us.
Last year, a group of parishioners and our pastor embarked on an enviously intriguing pilgrimage to Lourdes, France, and along the Camino de Santiago, or Way of St. James, in Spain, and then went on to Fatima, Portugal. The itinerary seemed ideal for religious education and spiritual renewal. But it also sounded exhausting for someone like me, who has multiple serious health problems.
Joseph Kenny | email@example.com | twitter: @josephkenny2
"Like Mick the trainer in Rocky, St. Louisan Kenny Loehr could be cantankerous, yet compassionate. Loehr trained Olympic and world champion brothers Leon and Michael Spinks and bantamweight champ Harold Petty. Like Rocky, Leon Spinks shocked the world in 1978 when he took down The Greatest, Muhammad Ali. Leon and Kenny (who passed away last February) go into the St. Louis Sports Hall of Fame Sept. 17."
I'm reading a book that speaks to me as a journalist, Brian Grazer's 2015 release "A Curious Mind: The Secret To A Bigger Life." In it, the 64-year-old Emmy-winning movie producer recounts his practice of conducting "curiosity conversations" twice a month for the past three decades to fill up his knowledge reserve and walk in someone else's head.