My friend Gregg spent the last seven years or so studying to become a priest. I remember when he began his journey that it seemed like he would be on this trek for a thousand years before it came to fruition, yet here we are… seven years later.
Tonight, he became Father Gregg.
His mom called me yesterday to invite me to sit in the family section at the ordination ceremony. Gregg had told her that I had influenced him in some way.
When I saw him after the ceremony and gave him a hug and told him I was proud of him, he looked at me and said he was proud of me too.
For a man to commit seven years of his life to become a priest in the Catholic church to say that somehow I have influenced him and that he was proud of me… I don’t know how to take this.
I don’t feel worthy of such a word of encouragement. For when have I devoted seven years of my life solely to that which is sacred and Holy? I’ve tried, but not my waking moments.
Tonight, I went to the ordination ceremony. To me, it was a celebration of devotion, commitment, and surrender. For me, someone who is not Catholic, I was moved deeply by what I saw. And in this, I ask myself the questions we should all ask who seek this life of faith…
How devoted am I?
How committed am I?
How surrendered am I?
Not nearly enough. And, not because it is something I must do, but rather something I want to do.
It’s been a long seven year journey. While I journeyed to find myself, my friend surrendered and found his self. Now I ask of myself… what does surrender look like?