Delphine and Quentin Tasset, members of St. Margaret Mary Parish in Wichita, sing the opening hymn at the Senior Appreciation Mass and the Harvest House 29th Anniversary Celebration Thursday, May 10, at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Wichita. (Advance photo)

Older Catholics bless the Diocese of Wichita with their wisdom, experience, inspiration, and fidelity Bishop Carl A. Kemme said Thursday, May 10, in the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Wichita.
He thanked the 300 there for their blessing, for attending the Senior Appreciation Mass and Harvest House’s 29th Anniversary Celebration, and encouraged them to share their wisdom, understanding, and presence.
“The human experience of time is a mystery,” Bishop Kemme said in his homily. “It flows steadily, regularly, uninterruptedly from the beginning until the very end…an endless flow of time.
“As our lives progress, time seems to speed up and at certain times, we wish we could slow down the clock and savor each minute and each hour. My own parents, who are among the group called seniors, express that sentiment, as I suspect each of you does, of the rush of time.”
Bishop Kemme said he understands that because he was ordained to the priesthood on May 10, 1986.
“It is hard for me to believe that already 32 years have come and gone since that important day of my life and yet, when I review the years, so much has happened; I have been to so many places and met so many wonderful people. The mystery of time.”
He also talked about time in relation to the day’s Gospel reading, in which Jesus talks about returning after his ascension.
“He says it will be a ‘little while,’” Bishop Kemme said. “Now, over 2000 years have passed since the Lord’s ascension, and still we wait for his return. But seen against the backdrop of eternity, these 2,000 years are a blink of an eye.”
Bishop Kemme urged the older members of the faithful of the diocese to help others with that wisdom of perspective of time because they “are able to see things in a different and in a more enriching way than what many can in our culture, who are overcome with immediacy and the need for speedy results.”
Seniors can help the younger generations take the “long view,” a view in which Jesus is waiting at the end of their lives.
The bishop shared a story about a young man who asked an elderly religious sister – one of the popular teachers in his seminary – about an emotional crisis the man was having.
“The sister simply said, ‘This too shall pass,’” he said. “At the time, it seemed so inadequate and far too simple. But now, after 32 plus years, those words were perfect.
“I was that young man. And, yes, indeed the crisis passed. That is the spiritual perspective we so desperately need today.”