My wife and I have just moved again; the original house we rented turned out to have certain, shall we say, issues. We have now settled into a wonderful new place and I'm back online!
And what a great time to return to the blog! August 10th is the feast day of the greatest deacon who ever lived, Deacon Lawrence of Rome! OK, so that's one person's opinion, but consider:
1) Lawrence, when instructed to gather up the treasures of the Church to present to the magistrate, did just that -- he gathered the poor of Rome and presented them as the treasure of the Church!
2) Notice that Lawrence was correctly assumed to be responsible for the temporal goods of the Church -- a longstanding tradition of the Church.
3) Lawrence displays a particularly diaconal sense of humor when he tells his executioner to turn him over because he's done on that side! Not to mention the wit mentioned above about playing on the term "treasures of the Church." His rapier wit is seen quite often in his deacon-successors around the world, who frequently take great joy in "tweaking" people and getting them to think and to laugh! Deacon Larry of Rome would fit in easily with any community of deacons (and wives of deacons) with whom I'm familiar!
4) John Paul II recognized all of this in Lawrence. During the Jubilee Day for Deacons in 2000, an urn containing the relics of Lawrence was brought to the audience hall from the Basilica of St. Lawrence. When the pope began his address to us, he gestured to the urn and said, "You were unable to go to Lawrence, dear Deacons, so I had Lawrence brought to you!"
So, dear sainted brother Lawrence, we celebrate your feast with great joy! Thanks for the inspiration!