Thank You

150 150 St. Mary St. Catherine of Siena

From our earliest days, each of us learned to say “Thank You” when we were offered and/or received anything from another. It is such a simple thing, almost second nature. And, of course, we grow to expect an expression of thanks in such moments as simple as holding open a door for another.
I tend to notice gratitude most when it is not offered. Perhaps many of us feel that way. For example, when stopping to let another enter a stream of traffic or retrieving an item dropped by another and in return, there is no acknowledgement of your gesture.
Not long ago while in the park with Lily chatting with others who were with their dogs, I commented that the day was especially beautiful – sunny, bright and warm. One of the persons responded, “Yes. And we deserve it”! That comment gave me pause. I asked myself, how could I deserve the sunshine? I wondered, should I be entitled to lovely weather?
It seems entitlement is going around these days; maybe it is something in the air or water! We all have met folks who feel entitled. One of the ironic aspects of folks who are so disposed is that they are never satisfied. Entitled people are some of the most unhappy persons you will ever meet. Not only is satisfaction elusive for them, but also their dissatisfaction leads to an ongoing sense that one ought to be, is entitled to be, happily satisfied. It leads to quite a conundrum and has no happy ending.
Back to “Thank You”. I do not say it enough, although I do feel grateful throughout my days. In fact, I confess I believe I am God’s most spoiled child! My gratitude flows from my awareness of blessings too boundless to measure and these include my family, friendships, and health. Above all, I am grateful for the gift of my faith and my call
to Priesthood. The actual life of a priest is wonderful and, for me, it is especially so when complimented continually by serving as a priest in a community of people – a parish.
For the past 14 years, Charlestown has been my life and God willing, that will continue for some time to come. So all this impels me to say “Thank You” to so many who form this wonderful parish community.
If, like me, you don’t say thank you enough, accept this invitation to use that beautiful phrase more in your own busy days. How about “thank you” as a fundamental response from your heart when you open your eyes to greet the new day, enjoy a warm shower, pull on comfortable clothes, and take your first sip of morning coffee?
And the Thanks is, of course, directed to the God who created you, so loves you, and has given you this new day of life to live and love and appreciate. Carrying such gratitude throughout your day can make this Advent time especially sweet – for you and for everyone around you!
Fr. Ronan