When I adopted Claire, my sweet puppy, I knew the day might come when I might not be able to keep her, but I did not think that day would come so soon. When I assume my duties as driver to the Bishop, Master of Ceremonies, and Associate Director of Vocations, I will not be able to keep Claire because there is no real space for her in the Cathedral rectory.
When I took up my duties as Pastor of Holy Cross Parish, while remaining Pastor of Sacred Heart and St. Patrick Parishes, I wondered if I should keep Claire; there was a couple of days when I was with Claire for only an hour each day, and not all at once. I asked a trusted priest-friend what he thought; he told me that had had a couple of dogs and that, though he would not be getting another dog, would not have changed anything at all. Tonight I know what he means.
I have been looking for a new home for Claire and hoping she could move in sooner than later. There are several reasons for this. First, I wanted her to move while I am still excited about the new assignments, thus giving me a bit of time to get used to life without her. Second, I wanted her to move while the weather is still decently warm and before the busy-ness of the Christmas season arrives. Third, I wanted her to move soon because I will be away a lot in the next month and a half, helping with several retreats and taking a vacation in my beloved Hawai'i. I was also hoping that someone I knew would adopt Claire so that I could visit her from time to time.
Thursday I filled out the "surrender papers" returning ownership of Claire to the Effingham Animal Rescue Sanctuary from which I adopted her. It wasn't easy filling out that form, but I knew it would be better for Claire.
I am certain today that Saint Francis of Assisi intervened in finding Claire a new home.
Two of my college friends are married, have four children, live in Springfield and are members of the Cathedral parish. She has apparently loved Claire for some time now, ever since she saw her pictures on Facebook. He has known this for a while and thought it would be good to surprise her and the kids by adopting Claire. They have a large house and a big, fenced in yard. He told her the plan and she couldn't keep it from the kids. I will deliver Claire into their care Friday afternoon before heading to Quincy for a Teens Encounter Christ retreat.
Claire will be very happy with them and will enjoy playing with the kids very much. And since they live just a few blocks away from the Cathedral, I will get to see Claire - and them - often.
Thank you, St. Francis!