I have given you a model to follow,
so that as I have done for you, you should also do.

in the story

I came from a large family. I am seventh of nine children (the Borg child, for Star Trek TNG Fans).  Growing up in a big family for good or ill you learn a lot by the example of your older siblings.

My sister Ann taught me how to read when I was barely three because she needed a student for her school house when she played school.  I would sit with her and she would help me figure out that the letters on the page made words that matched the pictures in the stories about Dick, Jane and Spot.

My brothers taught me to climb trees, and to be fearless.  We had a large ciy park just across the street fromour house that was essentially an untamed wilderness, and an extension of our yard.  My brothers built forts there and had rope swings hanging from trees that swung out across great gullies (probably not ll that huge, but I was small, so they seemed bigger).  They convinced me that I could ride the rope swing, and I did.  The first few times with my eyes glued shut, but eventually with my eyes open. What a thrill.

My parents taught me their faith by example.  They took me to church every Sunday and Holy day.  My Father let me come with him to Adoration, and Saturday morning confession (he went weekly, like clockwork).  My mom told me about novenas, like the First Friday novena: go to Mass on the First Friday of every month for nine consecutive months, recieve the sacrament of pennance durring that time, and you will die a happy death.  It must be true, because both of my parents, though they suffered debilitating illnesses, died peacefully, happily when they were ready to go.

I hope that I am being an example to my children, and to others around me.  I try to show people the way to Jesus in everything I do and say.  I struggle in life with chronic illness, and injuries, but then I remember, that my faithfulness in times of struggle can be as much of an encouragement to someone as the example of an elite athlete.  God has given me these things for a reason.

have you ever considered what kind of example you are being for those you influence? You may have more influence than you imagine on people you don’t even realize.

Be a good example, so that others will see the way to Jesus.

See you at Mass tonight.  This is the First night of my favorite Season of the Church Year: the Triduum:Three Holy Days.  I could live in church until Easter Sunday and be totally happy!