First, let me say what a blessing it has been for me to minister with teens for my entire adult life – 40-plus years. You are truly amazing. That really is where my message to you begins. You are made in God’s image. You are God’s handiwork, a reflection of his love for the world to see. Your value is so great that when we all were in need of forgiveness, God placed a value on us. He gave up his only begotten Son as the ransom for your and my life. By God’s word and actions, he has made a clear statement of how wonderful and valuable to him you are. You’re priceless.
From the Editor
The FAITH in Flint initiative, which was launched by the Diocese of Lansing to support the parishes, schools and ministries that serve the poor in Flint, is gaining momentum. Since its launch at the end of May, the initiative has generated thousands of dollars and hundreds of volunteer service hours. FAITH in Flint proves that people throughout the diocese wish to help their brothers and sisters in need.
“You’re not supposed to judge!” We hear that all of the time. Christians hear that admonishment hurled back at them frequently. But is that true? What did Jesus mean when he told us not to judge?
I first met Father Larry Delaney in 1988 while I was a parishioner at St. Francis parish in Ann Arbor. Father Charlie Irvin was the pastor of St. Francis at that time, and he and Father Larry were great friends. I remember being greatly amused by the banter that would break out whenever Father Larry and Father Charlie were in the same room. Usually, all that was required to get the ball rolling was some quip about the Spartans or the Wolverines – then stand back and watch the fun begin!
When a young man is ordained, he has no idea about what lies ahead of him. But then the same is true for newly marrieds, for graduates and for those starting new careers or businesses. So it is not what lies ahead of a newly ordained priest that really matters, it is how he enters into what will come. More accurately, it’s what he brings with him – not just knowledge but, more importantly, people skills.
When you drive along the brick pavement of Flint’s Saginaw Street, you may be left with the impression that this city’s problems are in the rearview mirror. New restaurants and a new farmers’ market are evidence of the investment by those who love their city.
However, in Flint, 62% of children still live in poverty. Half of the city’s working-age adults have not worked in the past year.