It’s two weeks late, but I want to comment on the high profile suicides of Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain.  It’s an occasion to ask “What is happiness?” and “How do we arrive at happiness?” – very important questions.  Too often we answer these questions and other important questions by default rather than by reflection in an age that is obsessed with appearances and feelings with less concern for reality.

What makes for happiness?  Maximilian Kolbe sang joyfully from a starvation bunker.  Martyrs of Nagasaki sang a hymn of praise as they hung from a cross.  A well-known world traveler extinguished all joy (for himself and for many others) by hanging from the belt of his bathrobe.  It’s clear that money and fame do not guarantee happiness.

St. Augustine wrote “You have made us for Yourself, O Lord, and our hearts are restless until they rest in Thee.”  Attempts to replace God with something less than God (success/career, fame, luxury – fine dining and travel) is a dangerous endeavor.

Mental illness is real.  It’s okay to seek help; we value those who assist them.

However, we should not neglect spiritual deficiencies.  Living in unreality is a recipe for unhappiness.  God is real.  Living as if God is not real is living in unreality.  Luxury and entertainment can distract us, but cannot replace reality.

Please consider the following: Trust the God who made us.  Trust the Redeemer and Messiah whom he sent.  Trust the Church that he has given us.

“How do we arrive at happiness?” is a big question.  Fr. Robert Spitzer studied 2500 years of the Western Philosophical tradition and condensed it into seven videos (30-45 minutes each) in his series Happiness, which members of our region can access using FORMED.

St. Peter’s Pastoral Council meets on Wednesday of this week.

What a joy to know, love, and serve the good God.