Thursday, March 10, 2011

Seattle's newest Shepherd

Last Sunday, Archbishop Sartain came to St. Columban in Yelm.  As Seattle's newest Archbishop, it was an incredible honor to host him at our parish (all 300 families strong, less than 1/8 of the size of the parish I grew up in).  Mass may have started a bit late ("GPS and I had an argument, and neither of us won...") but it was an incredible gift to have him celebrate Mass for the high school students who were being confirmed from St. Columban, St. Peter and a handful from Sacred Heart, as well as the congregation from our parish.  He moved fluently from English to Spanish and back again.

In the few short months he's been in Seattle, he's made an incredible mark on the Catholics in our Archdiocese.  Just last week on Facebook, Becky mentioned that he had come to the school she teaches at to meet the students.  That night, she asked the Archbishop to pray for her mom, who has been fighting cancer. A few days later, a personal letter arrived to her mom from the Archbishop: encouraging her, telling her he would be praying for her daily, and was honored to be her shepherd. 

An exceptionally personal touch from a man who has been charged with overseeing nearly 1,000,000 Catholics in Western Washington. 

Every time I've heard him give a homily, it's been humble, amusing, and poignant.  This homily that he gave at his installation Mass, is so beautiful. A true servant leader.

We hear so often of leaders being selfish, profit-driven, and only out for themselves (I'm talking especially to you, Stan O'Neal).  Even in the religious world, it's been known to happen.  And that is the opposite of who he is.   It was so good to see him (and shoot him!) in his element.  We were very lucky at our tiny little parish in the Nisqually Valley. 

It's a great breath of fresh air. 


Anonymous said...

He sent me a personal letter too after our concert at Benaroya Hall. I thought that was pretty cool! Lindsay

Noreen said...

I feel like we really hit the spiritual jackpot with him. He's truly amazing. Great photo, too.

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