from 45105 on 50W: just show up

21 Oct

All sharing in the priesthood of Christ by our baptism, may everything all of us do this day offer praise to God.

What struck me as I was dilly dallying and delaying my departure for a week on 50 West, trying to pray a bit, was the fact that the best thing about daily, regular, even scheduled prayer, whether or not we “get anything out of it” and whether or not it is satisfying or distracted,  might be that “we show up.” I need to “show up” more regularly, for sure.

One of my rules for my 50W trip is that, unless it free, I cannot eat at any place whose name is familiar to me.

At the Milford bridge, as 28 ended, my hours on 50 began.

Day 01 01

Ate lunch in Seymour, Indiana. Had the special: Swiss steak, mashed potatoes and green beans. Nothing real special about it. Maybe the beans were real! The waitress was polite but certainly not chatty or interactive, but the cashier said nothing to me, as she spoke right beside me to the (I assumed “regular”) customer who paid before me. I guess she knew I would not be back anyway. Maybe I’m giving off a “don’t talk to me” vibe. Today’s pie was custard. I looked forward to it more than I enjoyed it 

Day 01 02

Stopped in St. Ambrose Catholic Church down the street to pray a prayer for one of our parishioners who was having a job interview that very morning. He and wife and their kids had gone to this parish and school ten years ago, he had told me before I left home. May his old prayers, and this new one for him, be heard in heaven 

Day 01 03

At the church organ was a copied song sheet. Was the message for me or for my parishioner interviewee?

Day 01 04

Along the road I caught out of the corner of my eye, as I passed the church, a sign that read, “Behold, I stand at the door and knock.” I used that scripture at a wedding Saturday. Maybe the message is meant more for me than for last Saturday’s couple.

I continue to think and say to places and people I pass, “The Kingdom of God is at hand for you.” Maybe that is what it means for all of us to be evangelizers., saying by our presence and when appropriate in words to everyone in every situation, “The Kingdom of God is at hand for you,” of course, first trying to understand what that means for me and my world.

The biggest jolt so far was seeing an exit for “Palestine.” I had to stop. Palestine was 25 miles off 50W/150W.

Day 01 05

Almost everything in town was either closed or abandoned. The few shopkeepers who were at work all seemed to be cleaning their storefront windows. People were going into the post office, however, and a few kids were riding their bikes home from school. It was real quiet. I wished I were in the “real” Palestine, although I guess that this was the real one for the real people who live here. 

Day 01 06

Staying Drury Inn in Mount Vernon, Illinois. I am remembering from when I first did some searching after my first very favorable visit a couple years ago, that the owners are Catholic , and that the business is based on good Catholic values and practice. Staff is extremely friendly and helpful. Something in my memory wants me think that all the staff shares directly in the financial success of the hotel chain, and therefore invested in its success. Side thought: maybe everyone who wants to spread word of Jesus (be an evangelizer, in other words) would benefit from a course in hospitality management. This hotel is only 3 1/2 months old, so everything still smells looks and smells new and fresh. That delights me. At 5:30 p.m. there was a free “Kickback” for 90 minutes, with free drinks and food. I like free. I was amazed to see that the vodka, gin and bourbon were dispensed from a fountain spicket – spell check wants me to type “spigot” – like soft drinks usually are. That was intriguing.

Went to sleep watching the Royals getting clobbered.

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