Bringing God to an “empty, desolate place near you”
There are few things that kids can relate to better than going through a drive-thru at a McDonald’s restaurant.
Fr. Benjamin O’Loughlin LC used this analogy to explain how much easier it is now to receive the gifts of God’s grace from a priest at Everest Academy.
Fr. Benjamin was ordained to the priesthood in December 2014 in Rome, along with 34 other members of the Legion of Christ. At Everest he now serves as director of the Boys’ Boarding program. The newly-ordained Fr. Benjamin celebrated mass for the Everest Academy students on Tuesday, January 6, 2015.
During his homily, Fr. Benjamin used the imagery from the morning’s gospel reading about Jesus feeding the 5000 with only five loaves and two fish. He picked up on the idea of the people in the story being hungry in “a desolate place.”
Father told the students to imagine themselves being in a cold, deserted place, searching for food and comfort, and then to imagine seeing, in the distance, the golden arches of a McDonalds.
He suggested they think of a similar place where they could actually go through the drive thru and fill the hunger in their souls, and not just in their stomachs. God offers such spiritual food in Holy Communion, he told his listeners. Before at Everest, students could go through the “spiritual drive thru” with the help of Legionaries like Fr. Aaron Smith, Fr. Daniel Pajerski and Fr. Thomas Salazar.
But now there is a “new window open,” Fr. Benjamin said. “I can give you God too.”
He told the students to be thankful for the gift of priests who bring God to the hungry in all the “empty, desolate places” in the world.
Following mass Fr. Benjamin gave his blessing to the parents who attended, and visited all the Everest classrooms to extend his priestly blessing to all the students as well.