Abp. Listecki reflects on 65th birthday

I can hear the tick tick tick of the internal clock – hard to do since most timepieces are digital. As the poet John Donne says: “…for whom the bell tolls; it tolls for thee.” Tomorrow, the tolling begins as I reach the ripe old age of 65. Now, there are those that would say that 65 is not that old! However, in dog years, I am 455; however you spin it, that’s old!

The life expectancy of males living in the United Sates is 77.4 years and 82.2 years for women. Now I ask you, is that fair? Many of my female friends would offer that it’s God’s payment for women having to put up with men. They may be right; after all, they deserve at least five years of peace and quiet!

A bishop submits his retirement at the age of 75, so if the Pope lets me retire, that will give me 2.4 years of leisurely living. As some would say, just stop and smell the roses. Unfortunately, I’m allergic to fresh flowers and, as most priests, I will probably die with my collar on (as opposed to boots).

I must admit that I have become much more aware of the preciousness of time. There are many who would sooner give a person $20 than an hour of their time and as the years progress, time becomes even more valuable. Imagine, when you go to see a movie, read a book or attend a play, you’ve directed hours of your life on earth toward an activity which has taken you away from other important experiences. Therefore, we all hope that the movie is good, the book enjoyable or the play interesting.
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Ad multos annos!

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