Wednesday, 14 July 2010

In her hour of need.



Father Ignatius was in the Sacristy after morning Mass on Wednesday when Henry, a young Altar server, came in and said:

“Father I was off to school and I noticed there’s a woman at the back of the church crying loudly …”

“Thank you Henry … it’s good of you to tell me …” said the priest calmly, “you go to school … I’ll deal with it …”

Moments later the priest entered the empty church and walked towards the back. He approached the woman and sat calmly on the pew a few feet away from her.

She raised her head and got up from a kneeling position and sat down. Father Ignatius had never met her before. She wiped her eyes with a handkerchief and stopped crying loudly.

She looked at him and said:

“I’m sorry Father to make such a scene in church …”

He smiled and said nothing for a second or two … then he said gently, “If Jesus was here with you right now … do you know what He would say?”

She shook her head and wiped her nose with the handkerchief.

“He would say ‘Peace be with you’ … those would be His first words as a start …”

He stopped for a while, and then continued, “and slowly, His peace would be upon you and you would slowly calm down …

“And then you would get to know, and realize, perhaps for the first time … that He truly loves you and cares for you …

“Because Jesus loves us all … individually … each according to his or her needs …”

“Even me?” she asked calming down a little.

“Especially you …” continued Father Ignatius, “He cares for you as a child of God … and no matter what hurts you right now, He shares that pain and wishes to help you relieve it … all you need do is trust Him and speak to Him freely … He will lead you to His peace as He has done to so many others …”

“Thank you Father …” she said, “that’s very helpful.”

“In the meantime,” continued Father Ignatius, “if there is anything I can do to help … let me know … when you’re ready of course …”

“No thanks Father … I think I’ve just witnessed Jesus’ presence …”

And with that she left the church with a lighter heart.

She has been back to church every Sunday ever since … and no one knows the reason for her upset on that day she first met Father Ignatius.

15 comments:

  1. Fr Ignatius nearly had me crying out loud, when I read this!! Thank you for posting Victor, I have been that woman weeping so many times, but also laughing as well, thank God. His love touches us when we least expect, it touched me through your words here.

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  2. Hi Shadowlands,

    I pray that you no longer have cause to cry.

    God bless you.

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  3. This is beautiful, Victor. It reminded me of a night a few years ago. I was in my parish's adoration chapel for my usual weekly hour and a young man came in sobbing. After a minute or two I asked him if I could get him anything or do anything. He shook his head no, so I figured the best thing would just be to pray for and with him. He left after a few minutes, but I never forgot that night. He too needed Jesus' peace and knew where to come to find it.
    Thanks for this one and God bless!

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  4. That's a lovely story Karinann; thanx for sharing it with us.

    I had a similar experience.

    I was young (years ago) and I was leaving church when I saw a woman at the back sobbing her heart out loudly (just like in this story). The church was empty, so I approached her and mumbled feebly ... "Are you all right ..." or such similar meaningless phrase. She did not reply, but cried even louder.

    I said: "Wait here ... I'll get someone to help you."

    I rushed to the Parish house and luckily the priest was in. He said he'll deal with it.

    I went home and thought no more about it.

    Years later ... I was at the bank waiting in a queue to be served. One of the managers came to me and said: "I'd like to thank you for what you did for me a few years ago ..."

    I looked blankly.

    "You don't remember me?" she asked.

    "No ..." I shook my head.

    She reminded me of the day she was crying in church and how the priest helped her. And she thanked me for stopping to have (or attempt to have) a chat with her.

    Well ... what do you expect ... I didn't know what to do with a crying woman in church ...

    God bless you Karinann and thanx for your visit.

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  5. We never know who may be in need of a friendly word, but God always does. I may never know what the reason behind that young man's tears were, but God put us in that chapel at that time for His own good reason, and I trust my prayers were answered in His own good and perfect way.
    What a grace to have met up with the woman you spoke to that day.

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  6. You're so right Karinann.

    God bless.

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  7. Peace be with you dear friend....:-) Hugs

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  8. And also with you ... Bernie.

    God bless.

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  9. Hello Victor, I don't know how you think up all the stories but this one would feel like any of us. We all have times of hurt and sorrow, and we can all do with a touch from the Savour...
    I love Fr Ignatius, I picture him as slightly overweight and with white hair and a sweet face. Bless you.

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  10. Hello Crystal Mary,

    You know ... I never quite describe Father Ignatius ... either in my books or in these stories. I just say that he wears glasses which he sometimes cleans unnecessarily just to buy him some time before speaking.

    The reason for this is because I'd like each reader to imagine him as they wish. Each has his/her own "Father Ignatius" so to speak.

    I like your description of him.

    God bless you Crystal Mary.

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  11. Hi Vic. Just saw your message on my blog. I don't mind you using my photos if you really liked them that much. But I assure you they're not professional. I've still got so much to learn.

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  12. Victor, I have been that woman crying in church on many occasions. It was usually a kind, elderly woman who questioned me and asked if I was alright. In that state, I just couldn't respond, but it did me a world of good to know that someone cared. I would see the priest look at me, so I know he was aware that I was in misery, yet he said nothing. I am sure, though, that he prayed for me.

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  13. Thanx Zen ... I really liked the sunset photos.

    Hi Anne, I'm really sorry the priest said nothing when he saw you crying in church. In his defence, some men do not know how to deal with situations involving crying women ... they don't teach that sort of thing in "How to be a priest" lessons. But all the same ... I think at the very least he should have tried to help.

    I'll pray for you ... just in case he didn't.

    God bless you Zen and Anne.

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  14. This is a lovely story, in fact all your stories of Fr. Ignatius are wonderful! Thank you for commenting on my blog today, and God bless you :)
    Autumn x

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  15. Hi Autumn,

    How nice of you to visit my Blog. Thank you for your kind comment. I look forward to your visits again soon.

    God bless.

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I PRAY FOR ALL WHO COMMENT HERE.

God bless you.

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