At the monastery of Lady of the Rock at Shaw Island along with the nuns, there is one priest. I think over the five years that our group has gone there have been at least three consecutive priests. The priest attends to two or three of the San Juan Islands as well as the nuns. This year’s priest was from the Congo. Short, round of face, and the color of the inside of a licorice stick when you take off a bite.
He came down to meet us on the Saturday night and have a glass of wine. He arrived last April with his languages of French and one of the three Congo languages. In the meantime he is learning Latin and English. His English is understandable, and he has done well on learning the tenses. I do not know about the Latin, but he seemed to move through it nicely through the mass. The nuns love him. He talked of the wars in the Congo, mainly for the control of their minerals. He will return to the Congo, but his bishop wanted him to have the experience of America before he got on the church track to higher positions.
Saturday night he tried out his homily on us.
There were two farmers, and they each had a large plot of land. One farmer went out daily with his hand plow and worked on a little part of the land. The other farmer would go out to his plot of land and point his finger. “Tomorrow, I will do this, and this, and this. Day after day the one farmer took a little plot of his land and worked the soil with his hand plow. The other farmer , went out and pointing with his finger said tomorrow I will do this, and this, and this. Then our priest injected that this was an old African grandmother story. In any case, at the end of the month, the one field was plowed ready to be planted and the other was not. Father said he wanted this to be a parable about faith. Each day doing a little bit towards your faith. Then a much greater faith comes.