Fr. Charles Bolser, CSV, retired in 2016 after serving nearly 50 years in Viatorian schools and parishes. Now living at the Province Center, he finds himself nearly as busy with commitments to say Mass and share the sacraments, multiple times a week, including with local retirement communities, religious congregations and with families of alumni from Saint Viator High School. Consequently, he brings this unique perspective to his reflections on life and God’s constant presence.

Fr. Charles Bolser

“As the seasons change, they remind us of the seasons of life – and that we ourselves are part of nature; the seeds are planted and grow to maturity, and then entering into the season of letting go – of giving way for the change – the new – to spring forth and blossom.

“Each of us is both unique and gifted in our own ways – part of God’s ongoing creation. We walk together, sharing a common journey, filled with mystery and possibility; while at the same time, sharing a common humanity – limited and engaged in the struggle to become, knowing that God walks with us on that journey. The struggle to become is difficult and and at times painful and filled with most difficult. This journey has been going on now for billions of years and we are part of the stardust. The billions of galaxies, stars and planets are in constant change as is life itself. Birth and death are real, but death always gives way to new life – a resurrection to new possibilities.

“As I once every so often visit the old hometown, I usually go first out to one of the local cemetery and walk around. My Great-grandparents, grandparents, parents, siblings and countless aunts and uncles, cousins and many friends are all buried there and it is good to say hello to them all once again. I feel as if we are still connected and alive in a very real way.

I remember also, those friends of all ages – the very young to the very old who have died – by accidents, suicide, illness, addictions, and old age – those who touched my life as well as countless other lives in so many ways. We all shared our common journey, with the struggles that life brings; sharing our common humanity.

“To dis-member is to tear apart – to rip apart, but to remember is to heal that which is wounded and to re-connect. Remembering is making whole that which at least in our perception was ruptured. Life is that way. Creation is ongoing and constant. We are part of that. We are part of the Stardust filled with the potential for life. We are life becoming, walking a journey together filled with promise and the fullness of love which makes us one with the Creator. Our individual journey is slippery at best and we need one another, united in our diversity, each adding to the whole in a unique way.