This is our life, in its reality…how to journey in Easter

This is our life, in its reality…how to journey in Easter

April 2017, Fr. Mike Griffin's Column
I have spent much of my life living in the northeastern part of our state, and it is a wonderful place to live. However, when living in this part of the state, I find I must drive to Sioux Falls often for meetings, or, when I was younger, would drive to St. Paul for seminary, and that means I have to drive east on Highway 12. When I would arrive, the question would always be the same, “How was the trip?” And I answer, “It was good…well, except…” And there was no need to go further, everyone who lives in the northeastern part of the state driving east on Highway 12 knows how the sentence ends. What we are saying is, “It was good…well, except for the Summit corridor.” This…
Read More
Watching three periods of hockey to learn how to journey in Lent

Watching three periods of hockey to learn how to journey in Lent

Fr. Mike Griffin's Column, March 2017
I am not sure if it was in honor of this icy winter or if it was just something I found oddly lacking in my life, but it occurred to me a few months ago, that in 53 years I had never seen a hockey game. I had never been to one, or even seen one on television. I come from a hockey city, but somehow the decades went by and I just never experienced it. So a few months ago, I decided to fill this gap, and I called Father Barry Reuwsaat and asked if he wanted to go to an Aberdeen Wings game and he said yes and the next day someone offered me free tickets and I took all this as a sign from God that I…
Read More
It had been there all the time…

It had been there all the time…

February 2017, Fr. Mike Griffin's Column
So, as I am sure you are aware, it rained on Christmas Day. I know that Bing taught us to dream of a White Christmas, but none of us had any idea how to deal with a wet one. I stood in my parents’ house, looking out over the deck and watched the rain fall, torrential rain, and the street slowly fill with water since the storm drains were blocked. I was planning on staying and celebrating a bit longer than I did, but I wanted to head back home before the rain turned to the inevitable ice. It did freeze over, of course, and it was just as bad as I expected it to be; as we all did. As the sun set and the Christmas lights in our…
Read More
It is your life, and no one else’s…

It is your life, and no one else’s…

Fr. Mike Griffin's Column, January 2017
For the last four months, I have been reflecting on the five regrets often felt by those who are dying as they have been identified by hospice nurses. The first regret is: “I wish I had let myself be happier.” The second is: “I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends.” The third is: “I wish I’d had the courage to express my feelings.” The fourth is: “I wish I hadn’t worked so hard.” And the fifth regret is: “I wish I had the courage to live my life, instead of the one others expected of me.” I know that as children our parents worked hard and long to help us develop the skills needed to be productive and honorable members of society; we are taught how to…
Read More
Something tells me that you expected it…

Something tells me that you expected it…

December 2016, Fr. Mike Griffin's Column
These past months I have been reflecting on the five regrets often felt by those who are dying as they have been identified by hospice nurses. The first regret is: “I wish I had let myself be happier.” The second is: “I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends.” The third is: “I wish I’d had the courage to express my feelings.” The fourth is: “I wish I hadn’t worked so hard.” Now, to be honest, when I first began reading the list of regrets expressed by those who are dying, this is the one I expected to read. Something tells me that you expected it as well. I don’t think I’ve ever met an adult who hasn’t thought this, and already known this. We tell ourselves all…
Read More
It takes courage to be open

It takes courage to be open

Fr. Mike Griffin's Column, November 2016
These past months I have been reflecting on the five regrets often felt by those who are dying as they have been identified by hospice nurses. The first regret is, “I wish I had let myself be happier.” The second is: “I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends.” The third is: “I wish I’d had the courage to express my feelings.” My best friend and his wife have a little girl. She is two years old. She is beautiful and funny and it is an absolute delight to spend time with her when I stay at their house during National Guard drill weekends. She has moved from being shy when I first arrive, to running to the door yelling my name; and there are few welcomes which…
Read More
We meet and journey with so many people

We meet and journey with so many people

Fr. Mike Griffin's Column, October 2016
As I said last month, I will be spending the next few months reflecting on the regrets often felt by those who are dying as they have been identified by hospice nurses. The first regrets is, “I wish I had let myself be happier.” The second is, “I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends.” As soon as I read those words an image jumped into my mind. It was a “gif” I saw on a blog several months ago. The small repeating video was of a pebble tossed into a pond, the concentric waves flowed out and then, suddenly, the image reversed and they collapsed back to the center again. I was not entirely sure why this image was so striking, but it was mesmerizing, the small…
Read More
It is ours, it is a gift; it is beautiful

It is ours, it is a gift; it is beautiful

Fr. Mike Griffin's Column, June 2016
A few weeks ago I had the opportunity to drive to Eden, SD. I am preparing a couple for marriage, and the groom to be works on a family farm there and at the local grain elevator, so in the springtime, his availability to meet and discuss marital issues is rather limited. So I thought it would be fun to go and see them in Eden rather than expecting them to drive to see me. It was a beautiful day as I drove east and then north of Aberdeen and I had forgotten for a moment how lovely the world can be in springtime, when you are off the interstates and highways and smelling the slowly warming soil being prepared to receive the seeds of spring. I got to Eden…
Read More