“It was not you who chose me. It was I who chose you.”
This weekend’s Ordination and Mass of Thanksgiving is big for Father Marc Soellner and his family. But it is also big for the Catholic Church. And it is huge for our parish, for from one of our families, from our neighborhood, from our pews comes a priest. Another generation of Catholics will have Sunday Mass, because of the priest-gift that our parish gives to them.
St. Andrew parish and Father Soellner have reason to be proud, but not boastful, unless we boast in the Lord. Sure, we can say that we sent Marc to the seminary and that he decided to be a priest, as long as we acknowledge that it is really God who chose him to be a priest. We are grateful that Marc has responded favorably to God’s will and plan. God had a good idea. We are pleased that Marc decided it was a good idea, too.
Knowing that we need priests in order to have Eucharist, we continue to pray that God will stir among our men a desire and the strength to be good and holy priests. The last time we had a First Mass here at the parish was when Father Ed Smith reverenced the altar in 1983, thirty years ago. Perhaps the next priest from St. Andrew is sitting among us in the pews at this very moment, God willing.