In late October of 1991, an extremely rare event of epic
proportions decided to pay a visit to the Atlantic Coast of
America. Basically, some giant hurricane had morphed into a
a super cyclone, mixing in the air and riling the mighty sea.
It came to be known as “the Perfect Storm.” We were given a
glimpse of just what Mother Nature is capable of. Thirty-foot
waves were common in pounding the coast from Nova Scotia to
Puerto Rico. But other waves – higher than 100 feet – were
also recorded. We still get choked up over the last recorded
sound of Captain Billy Tyne of the Andrea Gail, crying out to
his crew of five, “She’s comin’ on, boys, and she’s comin’ on
strong!” Their names are forever remembered at the Fishermen
Shrine in Glouchester, Massachusetts, telling us to always be
grateful for the work of the wise meteorologists who also saw
her comin’ and managed to keep the death toll so low, compared
to that of similar storms of history.

HEY! Do you remember that the name of the hurricane at
the center of it all was “GRACE!”

NOW almost 25 years later, an even more “perfect storm”
is a-comin’. Brewing for many months, its target, too, will be
America’s East Coast, though its proportions and effects will
be worldwide. Its elements will reach beyond Nature, Humanity
and Divinity Comingling. No doubt they will long speak of this
one in the Fall of ’15, “when Grace Returned” in the figure of
a spry old Pope, and his spiritual storm struck the Great
Megalopolis from Washington to New York – with its eye in the
City of Brotherly Love.

My daughter, Molly, and i love to study clouds. Being a
great little photographer, she manages to capture some of the
best. She got this amazing shot one day, that manages to say
so well just why we love them so. It’s because we know that
somewhere behind every storm, however frightening, there is a
“blue-eyed God,” Who is infinitely bigger and better than them
all. Just like the mightiest hurricane – let’s pretend it’s a
Category 100 – is a mere drop of dew against the Sun!! And in
much the same sense, the reason why we love Pope Francis so is
that he clearly believes that the GOODNESS of HUMANITY, the
DIVINE LOVE in US, far exceeds any evil man can devise.

How interesting that the Biblical Name for God can be
translated into English as “WIND,” and what wondrous currents
have been stirring in the hearts of humans all over the globe,
Catholic and non-Catholic, ever since that 3/13/13 when a wave
of God’s Spirit scooped up this humble, happy, holy little guy
from Argentina and made him “the Great Shepherd.” His Spirit
now beckons the Spirit in us all and calls us together, whether
in flesh or just Spirit, to Philadelphia, many waves, many
currents, but ONE SPIRIT, ONE STORM, bent on “renewing the face
of the earth.”

The great William Penn’s noble yet failed attempt at many
many people trying to live as brothers and sisters, one family
under God (as Jesus offered in the Gospels), stirs this patient
man to say, “Yes, we have all failed gravely, but it’s okay.
Now, let’s get up and try it again!”

The “meteorologists” calling this Baby are not out to scare
anyone away – in an attempt to save lives. Quite the contrary,
these forecasters (like myself) mean to cry out to every ear
that can hear, “Come on. Dive in. Let yourself be swallowed by
this Cyclone of Grace. Her waves will be immeasurable. She’s
comin’, boys! Let’s lose our old selves, and start anew.” i
imagine that the whole administration of Pope Francis will be
seen historically in his American message, quite simply, “Yes,
the brave experiment of Mr. Penn failed miserably time and time
again, though look at the wonderful nation that grew from its
embryo. We can only keep saying, ‘I’m Sorry,’ and then TRY IT
AGAIN, try to show the world each day what we are capable of.”


Author: friardad

what's it like having a wife and six kids after having been a friar for many years and being still married to St. Francis' Lady Poverty?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: