All Is Grace-Very Rev. Ronald Gariboldi

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Midweek Musings: All is grace

Fr. Ronald Gariboldi
Gloucester Daily Times
February 1, 2017

“All is grace” is the motto of Grace Center, the day shelter for homeless and people in crisis in Gloucester. What does this statement mean? Sometimes it takes personal experiences to bring understanding to statements and expressions. As I celebrate 56 years of priestly service I still struggle to accept the reality that in every bad there is a good.

In her “Last Conversations,” St. Therese of Liseaux, a Roman Catholic saint, stated: “Everything is grace, everything is the direct effect of our father’s love –difficulties, contradictions, humiliations, all the soul’s miseries, her needs, everything because through them, she learns humility, realizes her weakness. Everything is grace because everything is God’s gift. Whatever be the character of life or the unexpected events-to the heart that loves all is well.”

Once again my recent experience of being forced to spend a week at home, dependent on the kindness of others and forced to remain sedentary helped me to understand the meaning of “all is grace.” I have so often visited shut-ins and seniors in nursing homes without truly understanding their experience. The grace of my experience enables me to be a better minister to my contemporaries as well as a better receptor of the process of aging. In the midst of my experience I kept receiving in various ways the message that this time of my life should be a time for gratitude.

I received a gift of a cup at Christmas with the statement: “Thank you Lord, for the overflowing beauty and the bountiful blessings all around me.” It is my desire that all the guests and volunteers at Grace Center experience grace

So thank you Lord for “all is grace.”

The Very Rev. Ronald J. Gariboldi is the retired pastor of Holy Family Parish. Midweek Musings is a weekly column that rotates among Cape Ann clergy.

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