Remembering Our Founder

3 Mar

“Founders never leave our memories for they leave indelible footprints on our minds. They give us the reasons to look back and ponder. They give us the reasons to look forward with hope.” ~ Ernest Agyemang Yeboah

Founders are important people. They were people who, at a certain place and time, began something new. Some founders begin new companies. Other founders begin new movements in societies or cultures. The mark of a founder is unique and inspires others not only to follow but to continue what was begun.

Each week, I publish a list of the deacons and priests who have served the Diocese of Gary and whose anniversaries of death fall within the week. This week, we remember the founder of St. Thomas More Church, Msgr. Robert B. Weis, who died in 1992.

Msgr. Weis had been tasked earlier in his priesthood to begin a parish to serve the needs of the people in Munster. He responded to his assignment with enthusiasm and vigor and founded a new parish. To this day, I still hear from parishioners who remember Msgr. Weis fondly and credit him with beginning what we have and continue.

That is critically important: “what we have and continue.” It would do no good at all if Msgr. Weis would have founded a community that is now dead. How awful it would be if people would talk about St. Thomas More Church in the past tense. “Oh, yes, I remember what they used to do when they were open.”

Our job is to continue the work initiated by our founder. We should be accomplishing the mission of our founder each and every day by what we say and do both individually as well as collectively as a parish family. I am sure that you have already caught on to the fact that I have shifted founders here. Msgr. Weis did the work of his founder, Jesus Christ, just as we are to continue that work.

We do not exist as a parish for ourselves. No parish exists for itself. The whole reason for our existence is to continue the mission of our founder, Jesus. We are challenged to do works of mercy. We are called to be prophets to the world. We are called to live just and holy lives. We cannot do that without glancing back at the words and deeds of our founder.

Jesus gives us much in terms of example. Reflect upon Him and His works and try to emulate Him in our daily lives. We thank the founder of our Church, Jesus, for Msgr. Weis, the founder of our parish. Let us continue the good work of both of our founders!

FAITH ACTION: Be a witness to Christ today and gives others a good example to follow.