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Accepting Both the Good and Bad

It is a daily ritual of mine to rise each morning, perform some form of exercise, eat a short breakfast, and then search for a passage among the writing of Sacred Heart giants like St. Rose Philippine Duchesne, St. Madeleine Sophie Barat, and Mother Janet Erskine Stuart. The first and second of these women were the founding members of the Society of the Sacred Heart. Each morning I search for a short phrase and send it to the Regis Faculty and Staff community. The short passages are meant to inspire and sometimes challenge our community. I'm never certain how the passages are received by my colleagues but I believe they cause a moment of reflection before we begin our busy days with boys.

This morning while sipping my coffee I stumbled upon this passage from St. Madeleine Sophie Barat, RSCJ, "Shouldn't we gratefully accept both good and bad as coming from the hand of God, for both are inclined to our advantage if we know how to profit from them." Having just lived through the forces of Hurricane Harvey's drenching rains and floods I pressed hard to find the good in so much destruction and discomfort. I couldn't help feel the suffering of others in Houston as I watched so many lose so much.

Of course the good of Hurricane Harvey was the breaking down of barriers as neighbors helped neighbors. Complete strangers saved drowning families, and armies of students, relatives, and co-workers loaded up their pick-up trucks and slowly helped rebuild broken, water-logged homes. The good was all around the heartache. The kindness of strangers turn tragedy into friendship and sacrifice.

Often times I must admit I fail to see the good peeking out of the bad. I have to work overtime to realize how to profit from struggle. It takes a consistent mindset of curiosity and forward thinking. It takes optimism and courage. Sometime I even say to myself, I don't think I have it in me today, to gratefully face the day.

It is at these very moments when a short phrase can jar a sinking feeling or a pessimist pause. How fortunate we are to be members of a rich Sacred Heart tradition that contains in its ranks scores of inspirational leaders? People like Sr. Carol Campbell, RSCJ and Sr. Susan Maxwell, RSCJ were mentors to me when I wondered and doubted if I could ever profit from an apparent lost or disappointment while teaching boys how to reach down deep for insight.

Our Regis boys walk the same walk we danced along as young boys looking for hope in the clouds of doubt and hesitation. It's up to us as members of the Regis community to help them profit from the deceptive setbacks so they can discover the gold. So pause for a moment when you sip your coffee and gratefully face the day!