Our previous priest of eleven years has left our parish to move on to a new one in Maple. I disagreed with him from time to time, and had he stayed on I would doubtless disagree with him some more. All the same, I will miss him. Through his efforts our old church was beautifully restored, and more to the point, we saw a surge in vocations under him. At one point we had five people discerning their call. We had several ordinations during his tenure. If all parishes could boast two or three ordinations in an eleven year period, the priest shortage would quickly come to an end. Furthermore, if by their fruits ye shall know them, Father was very fruitful indeed, and I know him to be a good man and a good priest.
This weekend I will meet our new priest for the first time. I know nothing about him. All I can offer him are words of welcome, my best wishes, the hope that he continues with the previous pastor's good works even as he places his own personality and flavour upon the parish, and my prayers.