by Echo Lewis, MH Raleigh.
After Mass one morning, several five and six year olds clustered together in the parish hall. One little girl solemnly explained to the others, “Mea culpa means ‘my fault’ in Latin”—a telltale sign of the growing number of Catholic home-schooling families in the parish.
Our pastor, Fr. Williams, whom our bishop calls “the diocesan missionary,” reaches out to serve these families, and the other diverse groups and cultures who make up this smallest parish in Raleigh. He also goes out to many in the area who don’t attend Mass.
The seven women in the prayer group formed to pray for their pastor and other priests, came to our house for Mass, lunch, and an introduction to Madonna House.
Theresa Davis gave a talk on Madonna House spirituality at the cathedral to a prayer group that focuses on social concerns. She also continues to lead the Tuesday evening women’s group at our parish. This year the group is praying and discussing their way through Fr. Wild’s Journey to the Heart of Christ, a book about Madonna House spirituality.
We are a small house in terms of number of staff, but we have some wonderful volunteers, like Uriel, who came to the States from Mexico and has developed his own yard business. He comes to our house every couple of weeks to mow the lawn, trim the hedges, and blow leaves.
Others work in our yard as well—Cathy and Anne taking a break from “corporate America,” and a home schooling mother and some of her children, aged 3 to 12. They weed and dig and plant.
Chris, a young man searching for his vocation, washes our windows and digs out stumps, and Robin solves many a mechanical and technological mystery.
All this help has given us much needed time for hospitality of the heart.
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