Tuesday, January 10, 2006

My Own Personal Mission Statement

Occasionally, God hits me with a clue-by-four because I HAVEN'T BEEN PAYING ATTENTION!

Okay, most of the time God HAS to hit me with a clue-by-four because I DON'T PAY ATTENTION!

He got it on Sunday.

Fr. P. was the homilist and he spoke about "following your star", much as the Magi did to find Jesus. He pointed out that this is the time of year when we stop and review where we are. The President makes a State of the Union address to Congress. The Governor gives a State of the State address to the Assembly and State Senate. Pastors give a State of the Parish report to the bishop. And part of this is to see how closely your actions have matched your goals or your mission statement.

Sometimes, Fr. P warned us, we see that what we've spent our time, talent, and treasure on has very little relevance to our Mission Statement and we must determine why. Are we off track? Did we lose sight of what we wanted? Is life taking us in a different direction? He used as an example the recent termite report he received for the Church and the Parish Center: $10,000 and $28,000, respectively, to take care of the problems.

"That's ~certainly~ what Fr. G and I were hoping to do when we were ordained," he commented wryly, "deal with termite reports."

The congregation laughed. Most of the adults have been there.

"But, as pastor, it's something I have to deal with. The care of the parish buildings is part of my mission."

I looked over at DD#2, DS#2, and Hubs who were sitting in the pew with me and light dawned: I HAVE HAD THE WRONG MISSION STATEMENT!

For years I have wanted to be a published writer. This means, of course, actually writing something and then pursuing publications. While I have had some very modest success locally, I have felt thwarted because I just don't seem to have the time or energy required. I have been taking care of my family--both as chief domestic goddess (a Roseanne Barr-ism from her early days that I love) and also as an income provider.

Well, maybe that IS my Mission Statement. At least right now.

And, truthfully, directing my time, talent, and treasure that way seems to be paying off. DS#1 is finding his direction in life. DD#1 seems to be returning from wherever she was last year. Although I wish both of them had a deeper faith--or any faith--they go to Mass when I ask them to: Christmas, Easter, family occasions. (I keep praying that they'll see the light. Anyone have a Novena for St. Monica?) DS#2 and DD#2 haven't rebelled against religion--yet. They still enjoy Scouts, they are generally nice to their friends, they do their chores with only moderate nagging, they're beginning to accept more responsibility around the house and for their lives.

I really can't complain. Much. ;)

I am raising the next generation of competent adults, ones who will, I hope, make a positive contribution to society by working hard, being reliable, being faithful husbands and wives and parents. This contribution, by Hubs and I,because I certainly don't do this alone, may be more important in the long run than anything I may write.

After reading Mark Steyn's article on Demography, it surely seems that way!