An email from a former student that illustrates the importance of ongoing gratitude for basic goods. It’s especially important around Easter time, for those of us who are still high on Easter joy. She said:
It’s really sad that we take advantage of our religious freedom in here in America. People do not understand how lucky we are. I just got back over winter break from a Catholic college conference and there was a speaker who told us a story about a missionary in China. He lived in an area where it was illegal to celebrate mass so he would have the mass in hiding for his family and neighbors. He was eventually caught by law enforcement and tortured with electric spears for about a month. All the man had to do was tell the law where their priest was, but the man could not take that away from his family or neighbors. Law enforcement eventually let him go and he and his family decided to move to the U.S. The man was so happy because he was able to celebrate the mass everyday, even multiple times. However, the American culture started to rub on him and he realized that as an American family man, he needed to make more money to provide for his family. He starts working more to make his family happy and can’t go to daily mass, so he goes on the weekend. As time passes he eventually does not go on Sunday’s. He then became one of those people who only make mass Christmas and Easter, but from the speaker heard from this man, he missed Easter too. It’s crazy to think that the American culture was able to pull him away from God, but that the electric torches weren’t.