Friday, November 29, 2013

Get outside!: Daily Mass Homily--Wednesday, November 27th, 2013

            I had the chance to visit the fifth graders at Wolf Ridge yesterday.  During our afternoon session, we went on a voyageur expedition.  It was pretty cold outside, with a biting wind, yet it was refreshing to take a hike through the woods and build a fire by Wolf Lake.
            I have something depressing to share.  Did you know that the average American over the age of two watches nearly five hours of TV a day?  When I grew up, I thought my parents were nuts.  We could only watch half an hour of TV and didn't have a Nintendo or Sega like many other kids.  You know what my parents did?  They made us play outside!
             Our society needs to get outside more often.  First, being outdoors is healthy.  It gets us off the couch and into the real world.  It makes us appreciate the blessings in our lives--indeed, at Wolf Ridge we couldn't turn up the thermostat--we had to build a fire.
             More important than human gains, being immersed in the wilderness allows us to see God's great creation.  And understanding creation helps us understand our Creator: "Sun and moon, bless the Lord...stars of heaven, bless the Lord...frost and chill, bless the Lord."
             Tomorrow we celebrate Thanksgiving, a festival started by the pilgrims who survived the harsh conditions they found in America.  It was cold.  Cub Foods was not around yet.  Heat came from fire, not electricity.  Through all this our founding fathers saw God's providence in nature and in helping them survive.  They thanked God for all His gifts and were able to appreciate their survival because they lived in the real world.
             Be thankful to God for His creation, and for His providential hand which has blessed us so much.

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