Before my limbs fail
The entwined roots of ordained generations
Steady my posture
At the rock of sacrifice
As my body becomes unfeigned presence
I extend my arms from my trunk
As sturdy limbs from an old oak
Reaching to lift up broken souls
The snapped twigs fallen upon earth
My two branches exposing
Thirty-six rings if cut
Fixed naturally with palms toward the sky
To catch grace as raindrops
For my beggar’s lips
Parched from unanswered pleas
My arms outstretched endure the weighty lives
Of sojourners hollowed out by sorrow
Or seekers rotting by disease or grief
Before my limbs fail
The yearning of the orphan
Or the cry of the widow
My heart longs for springtime
So once more standing in cruciform
I sing of healing and exhale for justice
Crying out on behalf of the starving
Over today’s bread
just WOW……and thank you for your ministry that reaches out to all
Congratulations, Fr Ron! Thank you and God Bless!
Thank you, Fr. Rob, for 36 years of giving your heart and soul to help us find the love, compassion and acceptance of Jesus through your own love, compassion and acceptance of us all, especially my brother, Peter Curtin.
God bless and keep you.
Oh, what a precious, joy filled picture and such proud parents! Congratulations and thank you for answering God’s call to serve. Al and I are so grateful we are recipients of this grace. May God continue to bless you for the next 36 years !
Father Ron, Heartfelt congratulations on this your anniversary! What a gift you are to me and so many countless others!!!! Fraternally, jack stoegerCardinal Manning House of Prayer for Priests
Such a meaningful metaphor to express your reflection of the 36 fruitful years of growing in the rootedness of your vocation–rooted in soil often frozen in winter’s grip, or parched in drought, but then moistened in time by grace for the next growth ring. Gratitude for all that you have shared, and prayers for the harvest to come. You bless us richly. A
So well-espressed, Fr. Ron, and huge congratulations!
That was such a blessed day for me, to be present at your ordination and first mass! I’ll always remember that little article in the South Bend Tribune when we made our first profession, it read: “Raab Boy To Take Holy Vows”. You are still that “Raab Boy” in my heart, the same as when we were 18 just starting out on our formation journey at St. Joe Hall! Remember that story about “The Giving Tree” by Shel Silverstein? That story is similar to the metaphor in your poem! Thanks for 36 years of your priesthood!