Daily Reflection
April 5th, 2007

Maureen McCann Waldron

The Collaborative Ministry Office
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Holy Thursday
Evening Mass of the Lord's Supper

Exodus 12:1-8, 11-14
Psalm 116:12-13, 15-16bc, 17-18
1 Corinthians 11:23-26

Today as I write this, our campus is reeling from the shock of losing a member of our Jesuit community. In the middle of last night, Fr. Don Driscoll, S.J. had a heart attack and died. He was a beloved priest, a warm and funny man and an outrageous practical joker. Fr. Driscoll taught theology to undergraduate students, served as chaplain in the School of Pharmacy and was in constant demand as a retreat director around the country. Just last weekend he served on a student retreat.

Yet it always struck me that this most incredibly talented man would deliver his Daily Reflections to our office shaking his head, humbly turning his handwritten pages in with great discouragement, usually muttering about how inadequate they were. His reflections were wonderful and warm and touched people around the world. Often, after they were on the web site, he would shake his head in amazement at the e-mails he had received from readers. He seemed almost puzzled about what they saw in his “inadequate” reflections.

What the readers saw in his reflections and heard in Fr. Driscoll's audio retreat (which will remain on this web site) was a vulnerability, a fearful insecurity he shared with all of us. But despite his fears, his feelings of inadequacy and unworthiness, he gave himself to countless ministries with tireless efforts. He had to go beyond his comfort zone and offered himself wholly and faithfully in service of the Lord.

It seems like a perfect example of what Jesus shows us in today's reading. He gathers his closest followers around him for the Passover meal. Then, almost in silence, Jesus gives his disciples a powerful example. He gets up from the table, takes off his outer garments, ties a towel around his waist and begins to wash the feet of his friends. Peter, who is so like us, pulls back and resists. He's not worthy to have his awkward feet washed.

But Jesus gently tells Peter - and us - that we must have our feet washed. Allowing ourselves to be loved, even to the most unlovable part of us, is the way toward the intimate relationship and love Jesus wants to give us. It is the way to our salvation.

Jesus washes our feet and blesses them and sends us out into the word to be his presence to those we see each day. Of course we aren't worthy of this task, but the paschal mystery calls us to great hope. If we allow Jesus to love, touch and heal us to the core of our being, we can do his work on earth. We still have our awkward feet, our fears and insecurities, but now our feet have been blessed, along with our fears and insecurities. The whole of who we are, feet, failings and all, is being sent by Jesus out into the world with our many flaws to serve others who also fail. As Mother Teresa said, our mission from God is not to be perfect but to be faithful.

We at Creighton are grateful for the life of Don Driscoll, S.J. and his faithful presence among us for 20 years. The Online Ministries would like to offer Fr. Driscoll's 2006 Good Friday reflection as a remembrance.

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