(A)t age 52, (Father Ray McHenry) found himself in a failed relationship, with no job and no prospects. It was the fall of 2005, and he often made the two-hour trip to his hometown of Des Moines, occasionally running into friends who asked, “Why don’t you come home?” The question was more than about where to live.
He continued to preside at the Eucharist for the Council Bluffs group, but in January of this year sent them a letter of resignation. Back in Des Moines, he began working as a volunteer at the St. Mary Family Center, which distributes food and clothing to the poor. He renewed acquaintances with priest friends who agreed to talk to Bishop Joseph Charron about meeting with McHenry.
McHenry met with the bishop, and was surprised that Charron said it was possible for him to return to his ministry, and that the process didn’t have to go to Rome. He asked McHenry to get counseling, which he had already begun, and make an eight-day retreat. Afterward, he could make a profession of faith and renew his promises to the bishop.
“I can’t say enough about Bishop Charron,” said McHenry. “He was the forgiving father to a prodigal son.”
After a brief ceremony in the bishop’s office on Wednesday of Holy Week, he returned to his volunteer work at St. Mary and began helping out in parishes on weekends. Then in July, he became administrator of St. Thomas Aquinas Parish in Indianola, just south of Des Moines.
about Todd FlowerdayA Roman Catholic lay person, married (since 1996), with one adopted child (since 2001). I serve in worship and spiritual life in a midwestern university parish.
about John Donaghy
John is a lay missionary since 2007 with a parish in western Honduras. Before that he served in campus ministry and social justice ministry in Iowa. His ministry blog is http://hermanojuancito.blogspot.com
He also blogs reflections on the lectionary and saints/heroes/events of the date at http://walktheway.wordpress.com
He'll be a long-term contributor here analyzing the Latin American bishops' document from their 2007 Aparecida Conference.
Vatican II pages
- Letter To Artists 6d-e: The Beauty of Christ
- On My Bookshelf: Old Man’s War
- EG 104: Women, Ordination, Power
- Letter To Artists 6c: Aesthetic Mysticism
- EG 103: On Women’s Contributions
- Letter To Artists 6b: A Glimpse Into The Abyss Of Light
- I Don’t Want A Francis Effect
- Another FfF
- EG 102: Other Ecclesial Challenges–The Laity
John Drake on EG 104: Women, Ordination,… FrMichael on EG 103: On Women’s … Liam on The Long Retreat Begins emmasrandomthoughts on I Don’t Want A Francis… Ray MacDonald on I Don’t Want A Francis… Katherine on I Don’t Want A Francis… Susannah on Up Bill Ruston on Ashes From Palms Charles on Comments Todd on Wedding Lectionary: Sirach 26:…
- 3,068,210 hits