We’re on a Mission for God!
As a very young man, one my favorite movies was “The Blues Brothers” in which they had the famous line “We’re on a mission for God’. There was nothing that was going to stop them from completing their mission. I am getting excited about leaving in a few days to go on our 3rd annual ride with our good friend Jeff Cavins. As I begin to pack, one the items that I wear when i ride is my God Squad vest. As of January this year the vest became a 3rd class relic when it touched the hand of St Francis Xavier. My hope is that some of the zeal that St Francis X had for sharing his faith will be instilled in myself and the group as we travel to our stops this year. We pray that Jeff will be inspired to share a message of encouragement to those who attend the talks along the way.
With recent allegations against high ranking church officials we need to work harder to be the reflection of Christ within the world. I was a young police officer and I remember all too well trying to arrest a black youth who had assaulted a police officer. We were on the ground fighting with 70 other young people encircling us yelling, “This isn’t LA!”. They were referring to the recent headlines about Rodney King being beaten by a few officers. I was a young police officer in Calgary and had nothing to do what had happened in LA, yet many were trying to suggest that I was because I wore a uniform. In the same way, as Catholics, many will label the Church with the sins of a very few; all the more reason we need to be on fire for our Church and show the love of Christ to all who we meet. (1 Peter 14-16) But even if you do suffer for doing what is right, you are blessed. Do not fear what they fear,[a] and do not be intimidated, 15 but in your hearts sanctify Christ as Lord. Always be ready to make your defense to anyone who demands from you an accounting for the hope that is in you; 16 yet do it with gentleness and reverence.[b] Keep your conscience clear, so that, when you are maligned, those who abuse you for your good conduct in Christ may be put to shame. An example of this is when I saw one of the young men I had worked with walking on the street and I offered him a ride, which he gladly accepted. In the past we had had many discussions on the Black Lives Matter movement and police relations. He very much enjoyed these conversions. On this day he jumped in the back and with a laugh and said, “Ain’t karma a bitch”. He was referring to the very recent killing of 5 Dallas police officers, indicating that they got what they deserved. A normal reaction would be to get upset and kick him out of the car and write him off. I was given the graces to stay cool and the wisdom to put it into perspective for him. I simply asked him “What if one of those 5 was me?”, to which he went silent for a moment and replied “I would have to take that bastard out”. We had built a relationship that had transgressed the problems that the world says a white police officer and a young black man should have.
We are all called to be on a mission for God and we need to recognize the things in our life that impede us from completing ours. Our missions can be very small, such as washing the dishes for our family. My mission for the 10 days is to fly the God Squad colors over 6100+ kms and be the best disciple of Christ I can.
P.S please join us as we pray the Novena to St. Joseph starting on Aug 6th . I am also looking for some young men to interview for an upcoming project that I believe the God Squad has been called to take on. Email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information or to volunteer to participate in this project.