But let's indeed take a break from the bad and think a bit on the good.
Last Saturday Bishop Robert Christian, OP, installed me as pastor of Star of the Sea parish, on behalf of the Archbishop of San Francisco. Many thanks to all who could attend, and a thousand thanks to those who prepared and served the meal following Mass. I've never tasted better salmon! Mariella Zevallos marshalled a small army of volunteers from every parish organization, who themselves donated the food they prepared and served. This lovely “installation dinner” raised about $45,000 towards the painting of our church. Thank you all!
An Installation Mass is akin to a wedding, and curiously the second reading last Sunday just happened to be on Christian marriage. “Submit to each other out of reverence for Christ” we heard from Ephesians 5. In his homily, Bishop Christian explained that since the pastor is the visible head of the parish, it goes well when parishioners support his decisions on matters from Mass schedules to wall coverings to staffing changes. But the pastor himself submits to parishioners out of reverence for Christ, respecting their wisdom even when he would have done things differently. He submits by making patient allowances for their weaknesses and annoying mannerisms, and above all he submits to his dear people by meeting their needs even when inconvenient. The discipline and asceticism of acting against one’s own will in deference to the beloved—always out of ultimate reverence for Christ—sanctifies everyone in a parish. After four years as merely “administrator,” the good Lord has seen fit to make an honest man of me by espousing me to the parish. I don’t say that I will be a perfect pastor, or meet every one of your needs, but here we are. Let’s enjoy our time together!