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The Lonely Ember


by Fr Duncan McVicar on 21/05/2012 -

A member of the Parish Church who previously had been attending services regularly, stopped going. After a few weeks, the Parish Priest decided to visit him. It was a chilly evening. The Parish Priest found the man at home alone, sitting before a blazing fire. Guessing the reason for his Parish Priest’s visit, the man welcomed him, led him to a big chair near the fireplace and waited. The Parish Priest made himself comfortable but said nothing. In the grave silence, he contemplated the play of the flames around the burning logs. After some minutes, the Parish Priest took the fire tongs, carefully picked up a brightly burning ember and placed it to one side of the hearth all alone. Then he sat back in his chair, still silent. The host watched all this in quiet fascination. As the one lone ember’s flame diminished, there was a momentary glow and then its fire was no more. Soon it was cold and “dead as a doornail.” Not a word had been spoken since the initial greeting. Just before the Parish Priest was ready to leave, he picked up the cold, dead ember and placed it back in the middle of the fire. Immediate-ly it began to glow once more with the light and warmth of the burning coals around it. As the Parish Priest reached the door to leave, his host said, “Thank you so much for your visit Father, and especially for the fiery sermon. I shall be back in church next Sunday.”

Enrique says:

Fr. Duncan… wowwww!!! exceptional!!!

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