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Scenes from my first Christmas

Yes, this is my First Christmas.....as a Deacon of course. Fr. Andrew reminded me and the entire congregation of that, along with the story ...

Monday, September 30, 2013

Pure joy: check out this deacon ordination video

Pure joy: check out this deacon ordination video!

Please check this video out at the above link. I was so moved by this that I wanted to share this with all of you. While being in my fourth year officially for discerning Christ's call, I know in my heart that he has been calling me to this since I was a child. My love for Christ and His Church has only grown and my life will never be the same. As I continue to discern I ask for your prayers.This weekend we were reminded that we are approaching the 18th hole but we aren't there yet! I am enjoying tremendously this assignment and the chance to get hands on experience. This coming weekend I will assist at Holy Mass for the first time as an Acolyte. I can't wait for Sunday and I know that I'll be smiling from ear to ear. I am so humbled and blessed to be a part of this journey with 21 other great men and wives. We all come from different walks of life and yet we are all one!

May Jesus Christ grant you all your heart's desires and fulfill all of your plans!

Bonsoir et Adieu mes Amis,


Friday, September 27, 2013

Training, preparation, and back on the road!

On Wednesday I met with my pastor and he said "all set, we're going to the Church!" He looked like a man on a mission, no pun intended, and when we got there I could see that he planned a training session. We had talked about serving at the altar to get a feel for the future, and he did mention it, and there we have it! I got a crash course on what will be expected from me as an Acolyte, and the duties I will be expected to perform. Wow! I love it! 

The training went very well, with a few moments of hesitation on my part, I felt I did quite well. It probably doesn't hurt that I grew up as an altar boy, and that I have really paid attention to the details the last few years. We had a few questions come up and he gave me a homework to touch base with Fr. Jason on those questions. That was pretty much taken care of today!

At this weekend's formation session I will have the honor of presenting my reflection on Sunday morning's Liturgy of the Hours reading. The adage of an hour for every minute you speak is not quite right with me. I believe it's closer to two for one in my case. Terry has been my guinea pig and she gave me the thumb's up! 

Early tomorrow morning I'll be picking Mike up so that we can head south for the pastoral administration training. I'm really looking forward to meeting up with everyone and it should be a great time.

Bonsoir et Adieu mes Amis,


Wednesday, September 25, 2013


Today I have my monthly meeting with my pastor! It is also a very special day as I have the honor to present the collaborative work that Deacon Jeff and I put together. Our mission was to put together a catechetical piece for the Sacrament of Baptism. The work was a sharing of the old and the new with some technology thrown in. We both put in a fair amount of work through research, reflections, and guidance from the Holy Spirit. I'm very proud to be the presenter and will offer this to Fr. Marc for his review. 

I'm also meeting with him to discuss his vision of the future of myself as a Permanent Deacon serving here. I'm looking forward to the training that will be coming very soon!

Please keep the prayers rolling, as even though we are getting closer by the day, we all still need your help!

Bonjour et Adieu mes Amis,


Monday, September 23, 2013

Let the bells ring!

With year four already firmly rooted this weekend will officially mark the beginning for all of us. This will be our first Formation weekend of the final year. It seems that we have been apart for such a long time and I'm really looking forward to being back with everyone. This will also be my final reflection in front of my peers, or so I think. I have the honor to reflect upon the Sunday morning reading from the Liturgy of the Hours. I've been bouncing my thoughts off on Terry and she seems to like it! At least she didn't say this time ......" I don't get it!" 

I also have a meeting this week with my pastor to review my progress, answer questions, and prepare for more training. 

I ask you all to continue keep all of us in your prayers!

Bonsoir et Adiue mes Amis,


Thursday, September 19, 2013

Pope rejects church of 'small-minded rules' in Jesuit interview | National Catholic Reporter

Pope rejects church of 'small-minded rules' in Jesuit interview | National Catholic Reporter

Please check this out by  clicking on the link!

Bonjour et Adieu mes Amis,


Another Epiphany!

 Isn't our Lord Amazing! Yes! This morning I attended Mass shortly after my posting about there being no fear of God, and then Bam....we hear this from this morning's psalm....

The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom;
prudent are all who live by it.
His praise endures forever.

Bonjour et Adieu mes Amis,


There is no fear of God!

Yesterday at work I experienced an epiphany. At one of our formation weekends our speaker mentioned that everyone should experience several epiphanies a week, and that if it wasn't happening, we really aren't paying close enough attention to the Lord. My assistant had just come into work and we shared a light moment together. I then asked him how he liked the new video game "Grand Theft Auto V". He said he liked it but he also confessed that there definitely will be issues. He mentioned that this game is really pushing the boundaries and not really appropriate for younger children even though they will be begging for it. The challenge will be there for parents to make some very strong decisions, like I did when Mortal Kombat came out. Today that video would be viewed as very mild in light of what is now out there. The desensitizing process is continuing.

He then said..."Mitch, I believe that there isn't a real fear of God anymore in this world! People's words don't mean very much, it's not about all of us , it's about what each of us can grab in this world!" These words really impressed me! He has grown up in the faith, yet hasn't practiced for years, yet that spark, that imprint that was made a Baptism is definitely burning inside of him! 

I told him I agree with him, except that there are still many who do fear and respect the Lord, and that what they tell you they really do mean. I also told him that all of us are guilty of desensitizing people. There is a phrase in this town that comes about around the third of the month when the government checks come in the mail, it's called "pajama day!" I shared with him how many people including myself at times had looked down upon some of these people. Viewing them as less than what they actually are, "God's Children!"

Four years ago I would have never dreamed that I would be sharing my faith so openly with my coworkers and almost everyone. I am also amazed at how others are open to this discussion and are really concerned. There is hope for this world, and through the grace of God He will use all of us as an instrument to bring the "Good News" to this broken world.

Have you witnessed your epiphany today?

Bonjour et Adieu mes Amis,


Meetings, Great News, and a time for renewal!

It has finally happened to me, I need something to keep me organized. For years off and on I've tried different ways to keep organized and like many good things, I've just let them go. My schedule between work, life, and this assignment has made it necessary for me to "find a way" to be on top of what is coming up. Well, I ordered an app for my Kindle Fire and I like it, except for the annoying reminders that came with it. 

I had two meetings on the agenda yesterday and they were both listed on the reminder calendar. #1 was a meeting with my pastor. I got home early and checked the emails and saw that he felt he was a little overbooked and asked to reschedule. I talked to him with my trusty little kindle by side and adjusted the date when we confirmed the appointment. Next week, same bat time, same bat channel.

Last night the three extreme northern boys (Deacon Candidates) met with our regional mentor for supper in Gorham. It was great meeting with the guys again, and meeting with our mentor. I actually remembered him from four years ago. This night was very good! It was a chance to share, to question, and to be reassured that there was someone close by who could impart some words of wisdom when needed. 

And now for the Great News! I have a very good friend who was working hard to get a new job. It has been a challenging time for him, yet through the grace of God he has persevered, and he texted me the awesome news. He will be starting his new job in a few weeks. Our prayer time together will undoubtedly change, yet the Spirit that was created between the two of us has only been enhanced by the time spent together and the Lord's presence in our midst. 

It will be a beautiful day in the North Country today and yes the leaves are starting to change!

Bonjour et Adieu mes Amis,


Wednesday, September 18, 2013

So the Church is a Mess? Not Sure What to Do?

So the Church is a Mess? Not Sure What to Do?

Once again I felt compelled to share this with all of you! This is without a doubt our mission as disciples of Christ!

Bonjour et Adieu mes Amis,


PS to view "So the Church is a mess?Not Sure what to do?.... please click on the link above!  

Sunday, September 15, 2013

A full week!

As fall appears to be upon us time seems to be moving quickly. With the thoughts of winter soon coming the work load is actually piling up. We are still in the busy season and it looks like for the second year in a row September will be our strongest month in sales. In my thirty years of work this has never happened but as we become more dependent upon the tourism trade this is what we are trending to. 

A busy work week equaled times of prayer. I've been praying quite a bit this week for different people in need. 

This year for the first time in 8 years I took the summer off from bowling. On Tuesday night I made my not so spectacular return to the lanes. It was a rough first two games. My final game was quite respectable. Our team ended up winning 4 games and we were in rare form of cheering, antagonizing, and just having good fun. 

We capped off the week with a visit with our daughter and her family yesterday!

This week I have a couple of meetings to attend to. I meet with my pastor to review where we are with the assignments and our plan for the future. That same evening Mike, Steve, and I will meet with our regional coordinator. 

Bonjour et Adieu mes Amis,


Sunday, September 8, 2013

Learning the ropes!

Yesterday, I was watching, learning, and assisting. It was a busy day in the parish with two funerals and a committal. I had already offered to be at two of those. We had a funeral at a funeral parlor. This was new for me and I knew the man who passed away. His surviving brother is a good friend of mine and we shared some good moments together and I offered my condolences and prayers to the family. It lasted about an hour. This was the first time I observed Fr. Marc. It was a short and simple ceremony that still offered our Lord's message of hope for us who are seeing a loved one depart. He mentioned it was like someone you've probably seen leaving on a cruise ship heading for some distant land. There is  excitement and confetti being thrown around and then there is melancholy as they are leaving us behind. Yet, the hope comes for those of us who realize that there is also someone anxiously waiting for them as they make their arrival. We all heard from a family member how good, caring, and humble this man was, and indeed he truly was. At the end Fr. Marc stood next to me and said...."You've seen Fr. Kyle, you've seen Deacon Jeff, you've now seen me, and now you learn to develop your own style!" This statement was quite powerful to me, and it is one I'm still digesting today. It made me think of how different we all are and yet Christ will use us to give His message of Peace, Hope, and Love. 

Next was a committal at the cemetery where Terry would be joining me. The young person was someone we know and it was very challenging. It was also and honor for me to assist and "be there" for the family. At times like these I keep remembering what Fr. Mark told me...."It's about holding their hands, it's about listening to them, it's all about being there for them!" I believe that this has become a strong part of my ministry. We stayed with the family and joined them at the restaurant to spend time with them. 

On a different note Terry and I spent the rest of the afternoon attending a local event and enjoying each others presence. She finally has a job where we can spend more time together and I'm loving it. We capped off the evening with a fire at my brother's house with his family.

That's it, just a normal day in the life of a Deacon Candidate. 

Bonjour et Adieu mes Amis,


Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Back home and still on vacation!

I really, really enjoyed this past weekend. We had Elise and Mike over Saturday night, we spent a wonderful day with Patty and Phil on Sunday, and we had an awesome breakfast with them also on Monday morning.  Yes it rained a whole bunch, lots of thunder, my dog was scared, and to top it off a rooster started crowing at 4:30 am, and it was still great!

Yesterday I started working on my invitation list for next year, yes we are less than nine months away, but who is counting! (I AM!) We all met together with the priests to plan ahead and get ideas on what we should be doing. There are really a lot of questions that got answered and logistics worked out that will be pleasing to all!

Today I joined Fr. Kyle at the nursing home to assist at Mass. This was my first time there and I really enjoyed being with the residents. I got a chance to make people laugh, to thank them, make them smile, and evangelize also. 

So that's it so far and I wish you all a very blessed week!

Bonjour et Adieu mes Amis,