"The Parish of St. Stephen Martyr in D.C. sees a generous sampling of the many who have been called by Christ to share in our communion. About a year and a half ago, I met Jimmy. Jimmy comes to Mass nearly every day; he attends lectures, and fellowship. Last Lent the parish sponsored Wednesday Lenten lunches. Parishioners gathered in the church hall after the noon Mass and sat in silence; eating a simple lunch while listening to readings on the passion of Christ from Fulton Sheen’s The Life of Christ. Jimmy loved these readings because his eyesight was failing. Just prior to Lent this year, Jimmy asked that we have bread and water at the Lenten lunches in order to observe more fully the spirit of Lent.
"Jimmy is gentle and he speaks reverently about the gift of faith and life, he who has suffered much is strongly pro-life. One day I saw him sitting in Church and I went into the rectory to retrieve a holy card I had ordered with Jimmy in mind. The holy card is of St. Benedict Joseph Labre who, like Jimmy, was homeless. Jimmy was thrilled to hear there was a canonized saint who was homeless. In the late eighteenth century Labre experienced poverty and persecution on the streets of Rome and on pilgrim journeys. Like Jimmy, St. Benedict Joseph lived the eight beatitudes in the streets.
"A few months ago Jimmy came to say that his bank card had been stolen. He wondered if I would call his Credit Union down south so his account would not be robbed. I called and agreed to receive mail for him at the parish office. A friend of mine groaned, 'Oh, you should never have agreed to accept mail for him, you ought not to accept mail for anyone.' I groaned interiorly as I had decided long ago to give up 'safe and respectable' Christianity. Crucifixion is not 'respectable.' The resurrection is the gain on the risk of the cross’s folly."
— Hugh Vincent Dyer, O.P., "An Easter Homecoming for Jimmy." I am so happy to be able to attend Deacon Hugh's ordination today in Washington. Please pray for him and all who are being ordained priests this season, including Phil Hurley S.J., who helped institute Eucharistic Adoration at St. Louis University, and St. Blogs' own Dennis Schenkel.