I sat here on the campus of the college and wept. I wept for myself. I sobbed out of the strain of everything we all go thru everyday since this pandemic started. But I also wept because I finally reach a wall.
My bariatric surgery had been postponed because of COVID and this morning, I had to cancel it because the cost is too great. Yes, in the richest nation in the world, I had to cancel a life changing, life saving operation because of the out of pocket costs. I wept not just for me, but the reality that so many of my fellow human beings make the same choice everyday. They have to choose between life saving medications and paying the electric or water bills. They have to choose between seeing the doctor for a potentially life-threatening condition or buying groceries.
To add to all that, they get put down by those who have everything whenever they mention their struggles. I experience this kind of hatred everyday too. People tell me to get a “real job” or tell me to “just stop eating so much”. They call me a fraud and fake. And while I try to put on a brave face, while I try to be the rock for those around me, it cuts very deep.
People ask me all the time why I keep trying to reach people who hate me. They ask why I continue to do social media ministry. I do it because I must. Jesus ministered even to those who would yell “Crucify Him!” We must minister to even those that hate us.
Our first reading this past Sunday felt like a retelling of one day in my ministry. “The wicked say: Let us beset the just one, because he is obnoxious to us; he sets himself against our doings, reproaches us for transgressions of the law and charges us with violations of our training. Let us see whether his words be true; let us find out what will happen to him. For if the just one be the son of God, God will defend him and deliver him from the hand of his foes. With revilement and torture let us put the just one to the test that we may have proof of his gentleness and try his patience. Let us condemn him to a shameful death; for according to his own words, God will take care of him.” (Wisdom 2:12; 17-20)
And yet, despite their actions, I continue to minister to them. I continue to show up to Mass every Sunday and celebrate the great gift of Love that God gives us. We all beg you to join us in this great celebration and to find refreshment so that you too can continue to walk forward. It is that little moment of peace in our otherwise chaotic world.
The Eucharist is why I can weep and pour out my soul and still get back up and keep loving, keep showing compassion, and keep moving forward. Come find that love, peace, and strength this Sunday!