Thursday, August 1, 2013

Hope for the middle aged

Today the church celebrates the founder of the Congregation of the Most Holy Redeemer (CSsR), known to most simply as the Redemptorists. St. Alfonsus began his life as a lawyer but found that the life of a lawyer was not for him. His true calling was to be a priest and to care for the most needy, the most marginalized.
I refer to him as hope for the middle aged because while he was ordained at 30, he did not begin to make his truest mark on the church until later. While he founded the Congregation at age 36, he was 49 when he wrote his first book, 66 when he became bishop, and was 83 when he published his last of over 60 books. It is no wonder that he is one of only 35 people to hold the title Doctor (that is Teacher) of the Church.
To all the 50+ crowd he reminds us that life is not winding down. Our mission in this world is not finished as long as we are alive. When we finished, God calls us home. Until then, even if infirmity should limit our activity, our life still has purpose, we still have a mission.