Glancing out the window, I got a glimpse of little children sprinting sure-footedly on the sidewalk sporting outerwear as colorful as the sprinkles on the doughnuts that sold out quickly the day before at St. Bridget Catholic Church in River Falls. The image added to my hearing of the gospel read there on Jan. 24, 2021.
They have no congregational singing there at this time, but a soloist reverently offered up such words as “the Lord of snow” and “peace to people of goodwill.” Various methods of snow removal from vehicles and steps were being demonstrated in the neighborhood.
Some other words that were sung also sought to remind God of promised compassion and to “remember me” in general and specific. I liked the effect of seeing the pianist and singer in the background and lower corner of the projected musical score.
Scripture readings included references to turning from evil ways and time running out, and that “the world in its present form is passing away.” It was read, “This is the time of fulfillment.”
The gospel lesson and sermon was about Jesus seeking followers amidst their busy and ordinary lives. We were taught it was more customary at the time for students to choose their teachers without being recruited in this manner — Jesus approaching fishermen as they mended their nets.
Father Jerry talked about engaging youth with activities such as mission trips, and about the act of personally inviting adults to “come and see.”
Speaking of current day disciples, he spoke of nuns helping raise children in monasteries, and librarians practiced in administering life-saving antidotes to drug users at crisis times of overdose based simply on their understanding and compassion.
The artwork shown of a luminous wafer and chalice next to the description of spiritual communion had me grabbing a quick screenshot to admire later and looking up St. Bridget online. A biography referred to her constantly glowing face as she grappled with her own earthly debts and faithfully pursued institutional reformation, plus ongoing personal fulfillment.