1. Deacon Mike,

    I work with you every day and I sometimes forget what a great writer you are! This one hit home for me. We often get caught up in our “busyness” and fail to take notice of the countless opportunities we have to make a difference in the lives of those around us. Often, our charity is reduced to a “point and click” exercise on the computer as we would rather make an online donation than seek out those who need us most.

    Fantastic article.

    God bless,


  2. Deacon Mike,

    You captivated me from the first word to the last, and you blessed me with an opportunity to reflect on the most recent opportunity I had to answer God’s call.

    God sent me a job seeker who is unemployed and homeless. I experienced that sense of discomfort getting so close to someone who is struggling day to day just to find food and shelter. I want to invite him into my own home, yet I am wary to have him in close proximity to my small children. I am struggling to know exactly what I am being called to do.

    I need to spend more time in prayer to ask God for His guidance. I need to offer more prayers for this man since prayers are as powerful as a warm meal.

    Thank you so much for your candor and love of Christ.


  3. A great reflection, Deacon Mike!

    A lot of wonderful insights here. . . To be human is to be imperfect. But the reference to the Gospel as told by St. Matthew about being the salt and light, and “being the difference” to those in need should strike home for all of us. . .

    Each of us has an opportunity each day to make a difference in the life of others; the choice is up to us. When we can take that step with someone who we have differences with, or perhaps who we do not care for, it is particularly special.

    Perhaps in the 21st century, the context of being “the salt and the light” for others means, as Randy Hain notes, putting the distractions and the “point and click” mentality aside, and going back to the basics.

  4. Deacon Mike,

    This article has struck a very personal chord with me. I am a RN who has just begun a position as a community-based nurse, visiting some very ill and palliative patients in their homes. Having been a hospital-based nurse for many years, I am finding the transition very difficult as the two types of nursing are very dissimilar. Today I have been feeling very discouraged and wondering if I made the right decision in my career. For the past few days, I have been offering up my frustration and discouragement to Jesus.

    When I opened your article, I was dumbfounded when I recognized the beautiful picture of St. Elizabeth of Hungary ministering to the poor and disadvantaged. The agency I work for is named after St. Elizabeth of Hungary! Jesus has indeed given me my marching orders and he has used your article to do it. How wondrously God works to reassure us of His plans for us.

    Thank you for being the instrument to reassure this nurse that my new job of mine is His Will.

    Terry McDermott
    Toronto, Canada

  5. I am so grateful that this article has helped, if even in only a small way. I can assure you that your feedback has touched me and been a signal grace for me. Thank you for sharing.

    jripoll – It is amazing how rich the scriptures are for our prayer life. Every day brings new insights.

    Randy and Deacon Stu, your kind words and insights are much appreciated. And they confirm for me that I must remember to add the personal touch to the also necessary impersonal “point and click”.

    Paige, you are an inspiration to me so your comments help me in ways you can’t know. Thank you and I will pray for your discernment.

    Terry, I always look forward to what you have to say. But what can I say about what you shared! Priase God for the marvelous way in which He works through each of us. The work you have chosen is so vital. I know that God will richly bless you with His graces for your care of those who so need you. The ability and willingness to minister to the chronic ill and dying is a special gift. How wonderfull it is that you are using it.

    Deacon Mike

  6. Mike — Deacon Gary Schantz, a friend, shared virtually this same message in his first homily this past Saturday evening. Gary’s message was awesome as are your words and insights — Thank you. I have forwarded your words to Gary. Peace!

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