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General Content

A Monthly Message From Our Chaplain


Happy New Year!


I am fascinated by the human desire for renewal and new beginnings. This impulse is the heart of what makes anticipation of the New Year kindle all of our longings for a richer way of being in the world. January 1st brings out our fervent desires for the future and our commitments to change, whatever that change entails.

I don’t know about you, but I have never looked so forward to a year being over than the year we just had. I am so done with face masks! I am so done with not being able to see my family and friends whenever I want. I am so done with our economy and country being shut down. 

New Year’s offers us an opportunity to reflect, not only on the bad but also on the good things about this past year. Hopefully this past year has taught us to be more appreciative of our blessings.  Hopefully we appreciate the people we have not been able to spend more time with, and we have learned to appreciate the people who have helped us get through the COVID-19 pandemic so far.

New Year’s also offers us a chance to reflect on those relationships during the past year that need reconciliation, recognizing that the way to move forward in more fullness is by acknowledging those places where we have failed another person in the past and then making amends. Is there someone you have hurt this past year through your words or actions? Is it possible to ask for their forgiveness? Is there someone who has hurt you this past year through words or actions? Can you offer them forgiveness?

And New Year’s offers us a chance to reflect on our most important relationship – the one we have with God. Do you have the best relationship with God that you could have? What can you do to improve that relationship? 


Peace be with you, 


Patrick Shanley