The first time I heard Father Greg Boyle preach at Chautauqua, I knew I was in the presence of someone who “walked the talk”, a man whose life was devoted to offering opportunities for a better life to Los Angeles gang members. He always brought a few former gang members with him who also told their powerful personal stories in various settings during their weeklong stay. They were easy to spot on the grounds.  One thing that they all seemed to love to do was to hop on borrowed bicycles and race around the grounds with the sheer joy that comes with safety.  One day our son, Mike, saw that they had mechanical failure with a bike so he loaded the bike into his car and drove them back to their destination.   It was a very small act of kindness.  But for Mike it left a lasting impression.  This small act gave him a hallway to connection he would not have otherwise had.  And that was what Father Boyle wanted us to understand.  The remedy for a world in distress is to remember that we belong to each other.  We connect through service and service can rescue us from our fear of the “other” and from our self-absorption.   Serving others can change us for the better.

Christine Dawson
Past President

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