This has been a long, dark week in which our priest has been driven off by certain members of his own parishes. The other night, a message got back to me. “Tell your mother we did what we had to do.”
I’ve heard vague stories, stories with no details, no names, that run sharply counter to everything I know to be true. I’ve heard words of pride: “A friend of mine who is very active in the church was hurt.” “A parishioner I know was offended by him.” Ridiculous accusations: “A pious woman who went to Mass every day died, and he refused to say her funeral Mass because it was his day off.” And let’s not forget outright lies that do not bear repeating here.
We chose to be friends to Father David. We knew he was coming into a hostile environment, and we knew he’d need a respite, and we set ourselves the task of providing that for him – a home cooked meal, friendly conversation, a peaceful refuge – because we knew that some people in this parish were choosing disobedience, anger, hatred, and, it turns out, even violence.
“Tell your mother we did what we had to do.”
I know who you are now, and I’ve known some of you for as long as I’ve lived here. Did you do it for the good of the people of this parish, or did you do it to protect your own self-interests? Did you do it to save us being led into heresy, or did you do it because you weren’t getting your way?
The truth, plain and simple, is that you only did what you had to do to protect yourself, to maintain the status quo. Father David is being martyred for your pride and selfishness.
He is our shepherd, and you did not throw him to the wolves; you are the wolves.
You’ve waged a campaign of deception and lies, but the truth will always make itself known. Darkness must always yield to the light. You may still win, but it won’t be victory at all; it’ll be your greatest loss.
For my part, I’m praying with my whole heart and soul for your defeat. Because Father David is the best thing that’s ever happened to these parishes.