Pastoral Ministry to the Niagara Medical Campus
Pastoral Ministry to the Niagara Medical Campus
Official Diocesan Shrine of St Jude
Official Diocesan Shrine of St Jude

Message from Augie

It takes a lot of courage to go into any kind of desert.  There are many unknown things there.   Perhaps that’s why God sends angels there as well.

He was among wild beasts.”  Mark says it so casually.  But really:   Beasts? Beasts are fearsome, so Lent is a good time to name them.  If you’re a kid, your beast might be the fear that you’re not as smart as everyone else in your class.  Or that someone is going to make fun of your nose, your glasses, or the way you walk.  Youth:  Your beast might be the fear that your clothes aren’t on trend, that you’ll never grow tall enough to match your feet, or that someone, maybe everyone, can see beneath the tough front you fear and find out how scared you are underneath.  Grownups:  Your beast might be the fear that your kids mean it when they say, “I hate you,” that you can’t pay your bills next month, that your illness will overwhelm  you, that you’re getting paunchy, that the confusion and sadness of mourning will never release you, or that you yourself must die.  That maybe this God stuff isn’t even real.  These are some scary beasts.   Perhaps that’s why Mark says the Spirit “drove” Jesus into the desert.  Even Jesus didn’t want to go out there.  But he does, and he’s not torn apart.  He’s simply “among” the beasts, which calls us to remember the harmony between humans and animals that we had in the Garden of Eden, and that looks forward to the restoration of God’s plan for all of creation.  We can undertake our own perilous desert  journeys, going among our own wild beasts, only because God has done so first, as Creator and Savior and Spirit, by sending Jesus.  Jesus, among the wild beasts, is ministered to by angels, and they are here for us as well, signs of God’s blessing for those who courageously go into the desert.



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