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Pastor's Corner - Fr. Bac-Hai Viet Tran

Fr. Bac-Hai Viet Tran

Greetings and blessings from God!

How was your week? Can you believe that we are in the second week of August already? Although I never want to publish or parade my private life in public, but someway, somehow, the bulletin announced that my birthday is coming up. At least two parishioners have stopped me and congratulated me and said Happy Birthday, ten days before my “real” birthday. Well, thank you so much, but I am not in a hurry. Well, today as we dictate this bulletin, coincidentally I received a letter from the Social Security Administration congratulating me on being a new recipient of Medicare and all of the benefits that go along with it. Boy, I was in tears to have to read this long letter! I never imagined that one day this would happen! I always thought that sooner or later this day would come, and I would join “Fr. Heffner’s club”, but it happened sooner than I thought. Well, as La Fontaine, the French poet wrote, “If you cannot go upstream, as the water is running down, the best way to do it is to flow with the water.” 66 years old is just the beginning! Yes, I’m looking forward to my retirement in the next couple of years. So it is the end of something, but the beginning of something else, and that’s life.

Like many of you, I like to laugh, because laughter is considered the best medication for a long-long life. Sometimes, we are not clear about healthy laughter and unhealthy laughter. Humor and wisdom go hand-in-hand, but sometimes not all humans have this important feature that goes hand-in-hand. Some people have good humor, but they lack wisdom. Some people are wise enough but they lack humor. Wisdom and humor when combined together can give rise to a smart person. Humor may lack wisdom, but wisdom can create a healthy humor. Wisdom is the food of the brain, while humor is the catalyst for the brain. When we have good humor and necessary wisdom, we feel healthy and good. Above all, humor does not mean to insult somebody or to speak insulting language. Sometimes people say that they have a good sense of humor, but actually have the ability to make a joke, while at the same time they are insulting others by their funny words. Such humor has no relation with wisdom. Actually the real humor which is called healthy humor has a deep relationship with wisdom. A wise person thinks a hundred times before he speaks. The same way a wise man speaks of humorous things while keeping himself restricted to the level of decency.

Laughter is good for all souls too. So enjoy the time, but keep in mind that we do not insult anyone. Wise people never insult anyone.

From children to adult, from the intellectual to the innocence, here are some typical humorous questions, answers and jokes of children which reflect on what I just tried to say above on Humor and Wisdom. Enjoy it:

A seven year old going to his first church service demanded indignantly when the collection plate came around, “You mean we have to pay for this?”

Many wise persons in history had a very good sense of humor. For example, Albert Einstein who was a great physicist and scientist presented many of his scientific ideas in a healthy humorous way.

For example: “Falling in love is not at all the most stupid thing that people do - but gravitation cannot be held responsible for it.” “It’s not that I’m so smart, it’s just that I stay with problems longer.” See, how wisely he did humor. So we can say that humor and wisdom are the two qualities which can live together and together they can present very smart ideas, can talk smartly and can invent the smart things.

Oops, I almost forgot, this weekend we are celebrating all the couples who are were married 25, 50, 60 and even 69 years!! We have 5 couples participating in this weekend’s Mass. Thanks to all of these couples who are a good example of marriage and love and good inspiration to many of the young couples in our parish to look up to. Congratulations! Wishing you many more happy years together.

Well, that’s enough for this week, be nice, be happy, be kind, be merry, and continue to be laugh and be wise. God Bless.

Fr. Bac-Hai