My brother died…

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It was last Saturday, and I had just dropped my son off at the line for Confession with Father Jaspers.  One of my friends I saw in line was quite upset, and they looked at me as if they needed to tell me something.  As I left the church, with my son in line with some of his friends that were in his Confirmation class last year, I was met by someone who told me that they had some news about someone that I know.  As we walked together to the Education Center building, she told me that the young man, who was the father of my friend, who was in line in confession, committed suicide.  At first, I thought I would post his name on here to show that he is a real person, but I would rather not put him and his family on blast about this horrible incident in their lives.

However, the reason this suicide affects me so deeply is that I actually had a relationship with this young man through his place of business, as well as through his baby’s mom.  So, I am left with the thought that in my interactions with him, why did I never invite him to come to the church?  Was it because he was not married to the mother of his son?  Was it just because I thought that he was young and had plenty of time to decide to follow Jesus?  Whatever the reason, it is pointless now because I will not have a chance to invite him to come to church and find a reason for hope, because he already decided that it was time to give in to despair.  It is sad, and his funeral is tomorrow, so I will have some time to deal with the grief of losing someone from my life who had quite an impact on me, despite the limited time that we spent together this side of heaven.

However, the reason I am bringing up the story of this young man is because there are millions of young men just like him, or with a similar story, who need a reason to believe.  Does it matter where we meet them?  Does it matter what there story is?  Do they have plenty of time to decide to follow Jesus?  The answer is, not necessarily!  We should be inviting them to come find a reason for hope.  It doesn’t matter what circumstances led them to come into our lives, we are called to tell them about Jesus and all he has done for us and invite them to come to him and his church.  Our brothers and sisters are out there in the world waiting to be given a reason to hope for the future.  The future that is right now, not tomorrow!

Thank you Jesus for giving me a reason to hope and the ability to share it with others!  I pray that through the intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary, his Mother and my Mother, I will be led to share the good news with everyone I meet today.

Hail Mary, full of grace.  The Lord is with you.  Blessed are you among women and blessed is the fruit of your womb, Jesus.  Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners now and at the hour of our death…Amen!

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