The BEATLES and FR. RICH: "Let IT Be!"

THE STORY: So Fr. Rich Toohey, having this knack for WAY-in-advance preparation, texts me- an hour before the Presence for Christmas event: "Can you play 'Let it Be'?"

My immediate thoughts, in no particular order: (1) Our super-talented music leader, Daniel Cabanillas, was going to be absent; (2) There's a reason why I am hanging on to my day job; (3) I've never sung that song before in my life; (4) It's a worship event... the Beatles? (5) It has IT (=Image Trinity) in there... pretty cool!

So, my respectful reply, addressing all those questions: "Are you bringing the hashish?"

Our conversation continued over the phone. There was a sense of something bigger than both of us going on. I recall a good friend, Fr. Mike Najim, once stating, "YHWH means 'One who tears up our plans.'" Little did we know that RCIA candidates would be joining us that evening- many of whom were new to Catholic experience, and inquiring how this faith integrates with the real world. Little did we know that many were coming with heavy hearts and in need of hearing God say, "I've got this. I'm in control. Let it be."

It all came together in this powerful message by Fr. Rich, connecting Beatles' "Let it Be" to Mary's "Be it done unto me according to Thy Word." I gave Louis Nicolia, our violinist extraordinairre, a simple chord sheet just before we began. Along with Mary I was pressed to surrender my music-leading insecurity and say "yes" - make it a prayer from the heart (regardless of the effect on eardrums), with Mary's conviction that what God calls us to, He will provide for.

Let IT Be!

PLEASE PLAN TO JOIN US for the ENCORE- our final stop for what has been an amazing "four week journey into the heart of Christmas." Awesome music begins with Jared Cooney at 6:25 p.m. Faith story by Pastor Rick Crocker of the Erie City Mission. Daniel back in the saddle leading worship. Fr. Rich bringing it all home. NEXT WEDNESDAY, December 21, 6:30 p.m. St. George Catholic Church.

This year let's give PRESENCE for Christmas!

God bless.

Greg Schlueter

Presence for Christmas is an outreach of Image Trinity...  a four-week journey into the heart of Christmas. Please join us on this great adventure of discovering and living out our identity and mission: in our capacity to love, we Image of the Trinity (Get IT?).

Image Trinity is a family-driven, nonprofit organization with a big vision and mission for our families, communities and the world. Please partner with us with by your prayers and (tax deductible/ board accountable) financial support.

Presence for Christmas

Please Help Spread the WORD!

Presence for Christmas (P4C) is a "four week journey into the heart of Christmas."
Ignited in 2010, P4C is Advent journey marked by weekly gatherings comprised of uplifting story, song and prayer. Each week individuals and families bring their "prayer candle" and placed it at the Burning Bush, which will collectively illuminate Jesus Christ in Exposition. Our Living IT Gathering Guide will help keep families talking and praying throughout the season of Advent.

Oh... the magic and wonder of Christmas! Remember looking through the Sears and JCPenny catalogues as kids? Wondering, hoping and praying for that special thing? Can you remember all the lights and colors, all the special decorations inside and out? The aromatic smells of something baking... most likely Bing Crosby or Nat King Cole singing in the background?  How about Rudolph and Frosty on television, along with special gatherings and events....

Sure, for many of us there was the Advent Wreath, and Christmas Mass.  But let's face it, for most of us these were momentary things to endure to get back to the main event.

Life experience is a great teacher.  And it's worth asking: What is the meaning of Christmas? Is it all about the presents? If so, where are those presents today? What enduring, meaningful impact did they have on our lives? How are we different because of them?

Let's keep it real.  Particularly for many of us Catholics, "faith" is often a tedious obligation, hoops you jump through-- that give us a sense of doing what we should. Is there more? Christmas has so much more to do with personal presence than with material presents. While presents are an important part of Christmas, at the heart of it all is the fact that we have been fashioned for God.  We need God. We need so much more than cliche, or empty obligations... we need to know God.  Christmas is a grace-filled season where God offers us His Presence. He is the Present. And He makes us Presents to each other!

Presence for Christmas is a journey into the Heart of Christmas... an invitation for you and your family to slow down, set aside the distractions and tune into God with expectant faith that He will be Present. God wants to be so much more than an obligation. He wants to do so much more than dwell among us. He wants to dwell within us.

Come join us for all four evenings. 
You'll be deeply touched by each of the stories.  Come with your needs,  concerns, hopes and prayers. Come join in a community seeking God together... enlivened by "something more."  God bless!

Image Trinity is a movement of families. Our identity and mission is simply this: You Image the Trinity! (Get IT?)  We invite you to partner with us. Read more about our mission. Help us make our "Living IT!" television program possible. 

To advance this movement, we depend entirely upon your generosity of prayers, involvement, and financial support (to the left). Thank you.

If you are interested in an Image Trinity event in your parish or community, please contact us: