Archive for April 5th, 2008

It occurs to me that it’s been awhile since I posted anything about our “new” priest, who has now been with us for nine months. As you know, I’ve been working three days in the church office, and so far it’s been working out all right, except that over the past seven years, I actually somehow built a life for myself without being aware of it, and now the job is impinging on my life. However, the up side is that I get to see Father just about every day but Wednesday — it’s his day off, and mine too, and the other day I don’t work (Tuesday) is Bible study.

We are not good for each other. We feed off each other. He has a wicked sense of humor, and is very sharp with it, so I’m always either laughing at something he’s said, or making a quick comeback, and he’s laughing at what I said. One of my favorite comebacks is, “You’ve been in this country way too long, if you know that.” Two examples: In reviewing new music with our choir (the only priest I know who actually comes to rehearsals and assists the choir director), he noted that the word “our” in “Our Father” had a letter R pencilled in, to remind the choir to sing the word “R”. “Arrr,” he said, “it is a pirate Lord’s Prayer!” Looking very pleased with himself.

Then there was Bible study this past Tuesday, on the Gospel of John, which is always heavy going, even with the best group — and at 61, I’m the youngest member of this group. He was relating something in Chapter 3 to our being part of Adam’s family, then smiled and said, “Addams Family.” I don’t know if anyone else even got it, but I cracked up. And on Thursday, I forget what we were talking about, but we were having such a good time that the sexton remarked, “I thought you two just had juice for lunch. What the heck was in it?!” I dunno, maybe it was his mother-in-law’s Romanian borshch that he shared with me.

But I really love his theological insights, such as noting that the Addams Family may well have been named for Adam — “They are a strange family, but normal in many ways, and they show us that we have our oddities, too, even when we appear normal to everyone else. And this is a result of the fall of Adam.” Then there was the Bible study when someone asked a question about the Big Bang Theory, and he went into it from a detailed physicist’s point of view — but completely comprehensible. (He says that the Big Bang is not incompatible with Creationism, just that at some point, God organized the matter of space into the world we have today.) And I thought, “There are definite advantages to having a physicist for a priest!”

I have not yet gone to confession with him. I do, however, have the blessing of my current confessor to do so — face it, at $3.00+ per gallon of gas, even a car that gets 40 mpg is going to burn a lot of fuel over 80 miles round trip. But I was very impressed when someone came in for confession, and he spent two hours with that person — I’m always relieved to know that a priest takes confession that seriously.

I mean, really — classical musician, Ph.D. in physics, in-depth theologian, and a great sense of humor — does it get any better?! I pray daily that he stays with our parish for a long, long time!!

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