gladysNothing can prepare you for receiving generosity from people, who have so much less than you. The overwhelming feeling is tenfold when you realize you’re the benefactor of such precious gifts.

The priests and rectory staff of St. Charles Lwanga opened their home to us and went to every effort to make sure we felt comfortable and nurtured. It didn’t take but a day for the housekeeper to notice that all I needed at 5 a.m. with the sunrise was a little boiled water and Nescafe – and then like clockwork it was waiting for me. When Will commented on an entrée he enjoyed, you could be certain we’d see outstationmealit at the next meal. These thoughtful considerations were wonderful and yet they paled in comparison to the sincere love and warmth extended to us each day.

How is it possible to feel you have family so far from home? I’m not sure, but we did. The bond and connection we formed in such a short time is difficult to imagine. Perhaps the magic is possible, because you’re vulnerable entering such an unfamiliar place and then you’re met with such unconditional warmth and hospitality – you can’t help but fall in love.

This month it has been our turn to bestow our brand of hospitality on Fr. Matthias as he is visiting Chicago. Numerous families have invited him over to share a meal, others have taken him to enjoy local sites and the teachers of St. Andrew School have opened their classrooms – inviting him to speak and answer students’ questions.

If you haven’t had an opportunity to share time with Fr. Matthias, mark your calendar for a Mass during the weekend of Oct. 4 when he will speak at each of St. Andrew’s services and we will conduct a special collection to support our sister parish.

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