Yes, that Father Ted. The one off the telly. This week the Rose of Tralee or the “Lovely Girls Competition” as it’s known when it’s being lampooned in Father Ted, takes place in Co. Kerry. So for the week that’s in it and knowing how much we Irish love to quote lines from the show, here are some of my favourites and a few thoughts that came to mind when reading them.
“Ah, go on!”
If you want to share your faith with someone, don’t be pushy.
People can get defensive quickly if it seems like you’re telling them what to do. If you meet people where they are and meet their real needs, they’re much more likely to respond.
“Bishops love sci-fi!”
Have you come across people you think are the perfect Christians? It looks like they have it all sorted out? You think they must spend their days studying the Bible, praying for hours on end and they have a flawless, direct line to God? Well we’re all human. We’re all regular, imperfect people with regular interests, hopes and dreams, fears and concerns. Don’t worry yourself with putting others on a pedestal or thinking they have access to something you don’t. We all have a unique and personal relationship with God. Also, I’m sure many Bishops really do like sci-fi.
“Is there anything to be said for saying another mass?”
Prayer and worship are incredibly powerful and can feel great too but they should be followed up with action. James 2:17 says “faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead.”
“That would be an ecumenical matter.”
This is Father Jack’s response to any question put to him by Bishops visiting the island. He gets away with this catch-all phrase because ecumenical is another word for non-denominational or Christian unity. So many things in our society should be concerns of the church and not just a particular church but all of them, united together to serve God’s kingdom and his people.
“The money was just resting in my account.”
Guilt stays with you but the truth will set you free. We can all have access to the perfect forgiveness that God offers. He take our sins and wipes the slate clean. All we have to do is ask.
“Down with this sort of thing! Careful now.”
When your heart’s not in something, it’s obvious. Have you tried praying for God to reignite your boldness and passion for whatever it is you’re doing? How about praying for help? Is it time to reevaluate?
“These are small but those are far away.”
Perspective is important. Sometimes your perspective can hide things that are obvious to others. Many things may look the same on the surface but if you can take a step back and change your perspective you might find things look very different. Be prepared to look at things from the perspective of others.