While going through my files the other day I came across a story I had written some years ago entitled, “The Park”. I subtitled it: “a parable – with God’s help, a prophesy – about the Church.” I never did find a place to publish it – perhaps it was always meant for this space. I still believe it has something important to say about the relationship between faith in God, a desire to serve and good leadership in the Church.
It’s rather long for a blog entry – so I’ll be publishing it in installments over the next few week. Please know that any feedback you could give me would be most welcome and appreciated.
Jim Philipps (3rd millennium pilgrim)
“Once upon a time, a very wealthy woman sat by an open window overlooking the beautiful grounds of her estate. It was Spring, and the bright sunlight brought out the best of the gardens and wooded landscapes. Bursts of vibrant reds and yellows and oranges and purples complemented the myriad green hues of the trees, all against the backdrop of an azure blue sky. But as she looked out the window she sighed.
‘What a wondrous place this is,’ she said to herself. ‘How I wish I could share it wtih others.’ And then she had an idea.
‘I know what I will do!” she said, tapping her hands on the arms of the chair. ‘I will turn my estate into a Park.’
The Woman’s plan was a great sucess. As she walked about the grounds greeting the many visitors with a smile, hugging the little children, even getting coaxed into a game of hide and seek, she took great joy from the happiness that she saw in the faces of those around her.
As Summer passed into Fall the weather turned cooler and the Woman thought that this would be an ideal time to take a vacation. So she called upon some people in the community to keep an eye on things in her absence. After she had finished giving her instructions on the best ways to care for and maintain the park, she left them with one final piece of advice.
‘Remember,’ she said, ‘that this Park is for the enjoyment and well being of all of the people who will come to visit. Everything that you do must be of service to them.’ And with those words, she departed.”
next time – the park overseers take up their duties….sort of