People’s reaction to the Cathedral never ceases to amaze me. Just a little while ago I finished a tour with a group of 5th graders from Holy Spirit Parish on the southeast side. They sighed at the beauty and majesty of color and form. They marveled at the symbolism of sculpture and art. Their teachers and mother-chaperones were even more impressed. And once again, I had to stand back and remind myself how blessed we are to worship in such a glorious space. I beg you as rector to not take it for granted, but to take care of the precious gift we have been blessed with thanks to the stewardship of so many in our parish, the Catholic community in Sioux Falls, and the generous people of the Diocese at large. A grand Cathedral is grand, but it’s nothing more than a shell if we are not forming each other in the faith and reaching out to one another to form community. Pope Francis said as much not too long ago.
Tuesday the Parish Council met to complete phase II of our strategic planning exercise. We were to name the strengths and weaknesses of the parish; to name the opportunities within the parish to capitalize on; and finally, to name “threats” that could become an obstacle to achieving a vibrant parish life. People were listed as our strength. Lack of lay leadership and the investing of time and talent by lay people in the parish were listed as weaknesses. Yet, “untapped people resources” within our parish was at the top of the opportunity list. Lack of “lay volunteer follow through” and “people willing to stand up and lead” were listed as possible threats to actualizing our potential. Yes, it came down to one element: People. Now that I have been here almost a year I can honestly say there are great things happening in our parish. But I can also see the potential for great growth in all areas of parish life, not just in the spiritual and material realm, but in the “relational.” And this is perhaps the most significant of all! Someone not too long ago who joined the parish said to me, “I love it here – the liturgy, the sacred music, the beauty – but people haven’t necessarily been that welcoming.” It got me thinking: “Are we welcoming people? Are we forming parish relationships as to create a vibrant parish community?”
On this Trinity Sunday we learn that God is eternally Father by his relationship to his only-begotten Son, who, reciprocally, is Son only in relation to his Father. The Spirit, likewise, is inseparably one with the Father and the Son. Jesus reveals the triune nature of God and the inseparable union of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. The ultimate end, the purpose for which God created us, is to be in a deep, abiding relationship, first, with the God who loves us, but second, and as important, to be in relationship with each other as disciples of Jesus Christ … And that is where we truly reflect the unity of the Trinity.
Fr. James P. Morgan