The Missions: San Francisco and San José

Unless the mission is oriented by charity, that is, unless it springs from a profound act of divine love, it risks being reduced to mere philanthropic and social activity...Consequently, being missionaries means loving God with all one's heart, even to the point, if necessary, of dying for him. - Pope Benedict XVI

so there i am at the 7am Mass in banica, listening to the first reading and this little puppy, about 2 inches tall, comes stumbling down the aisle. i mean, this thing couldn't have been more than 6 weeks old. it sat there on the first step whimpering, so this lady grabs him by the neck and takes him out. by the time the psalm rolled around he was back. after the Alelluia i go over to the pulpit to proclaim the Gospel, and this whisp of an animal sits down right next to my feet. i finish the Gospel and preach a quick homily about St. Benedict, and the little fellow starts to follow me to the altar, so i give him a swift kick with my right shoe, he yelps and smacks the candle stand. (just kidding, i didn't kick him, it is st francis of assisi parish after all...) so anyway, he follows me over to the altar, so i bend down and pick him up and try to get him moving the other direction, off the sanctuary. he refuses to comply, so there i am with a peanut of a dog at my feet. i call over the altar boy, who reaches down to get him, and the runt goes under the altar. now i have an altar boy on his knees chasing this beast around and he finally gets him and carries him out. it took about 2.5 minutes for the people to stop chuckling...please try and keep the "it takes a runt to know a runt" comments to a minumum...


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