Saturday, May 5, 2012
2012 Race for Vocations
Included in the photo, second to the left, is Fr. Joe Moriarty, director of spiritual formation on the Hill and the spiritual director of yours truly. He has run the race for 19 years.
Some people get their jollies from running.
While I enjoy it to an extent, I do not enjoy it for 13 miles.
But it really isn't about the running. It is about a shared purpose, a shared struggle.
The 350+ folks running as a part of the vocations contingent might say the same thing. I am not the only one who often kept going past the folks sidelined on stretchers--with a prayer for them of course--and beyond the point of pain simply by remembering the reason for our race: vocations.
Anything for vocations...
Because we need them. And because they are there, awaiting an answer.
Of course it's not all selfless. I admit there is nothing like the feeling one gets at the end, when one passes the finish line and realizes what he has done.
You know, I can easily see why St. Paul likens the Christian life to a race. The ups and downs, the communal nature of the whole thing, the pains, the exhilaration, the cloud of generous witnesses on the sidelines who yell words of encouragement when you just wish they'd shut up and let you take a moment's rest, the refueling at water and Gatorade stations, the length of the track, the mob-like madness, the training and practice, the moments of disappointment and falling short and the moments of success and achievement, the self-discipline it demands, the cramps, the joyful but sacrificial nature of it, the feeling of being empty and yet finding there's a bit more in you to give, the crazy fun of it all, and of course, that feeling you get when you finally--after what seem to be miles of checkered flags--reach the end and rest.
And, if you're wondering, my time was 2:09 and something. Lots of work to do for next year...
May God bless our Church with many more vocations to the priesthood, religious life, sacred married life, and sacred single life...in order to help the rest of us run the race on earth and bring us, at last, to the finish line!