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A Message From Fr. Jordan


Thank you, all of you, for the prayers and many other forms of support you have given me over the past few years. As many of you know, I have been struggling with various symptoms which have impacted my ability to minister as an associate pastor, which is why my assignment here at Queen of All Saints and St. Mary's was changed to "sacramental assistant," pending a more thorough and conclusive medical evaluation or an assignment change from the bishop. At the time I was confident that a diagnosis would be given shortly.


One global pandemic later, I (and all of us) have learned that the human body and its health are far more complex than we often assume. I don't necessarily mean this negatively; the words of Psalm 139 are often on my mind: 0 LoRD, you search me and you know me. I thank you who wondelfully made me (v. 1, 14). In the course of seeking answers, I have developed healthier habits; the challenges of adapting my life and ministry have drawn me closer to God, the true source of our strength; and my doctors and I have found certain medications, supplements, and lifestyle changes that have indeed eased some of my symptoms. Additionally, your patience, understanding, and gratitude-especially that of Fr. Dave and the parish staff-have been an absolutely necessary part of this journey, and so I want to thank you once more.


However, it should come as no surprise that, thus far, 1 have not gotten the answers I've been seeking. My doctors-including specialists at the University of Chicago whom I would recommend to anyone-have all hesitated to give a conclusive diagnosis. Two applications to receive care at Mayo Clinic were rejected. Follow-up appointments have become few and far between, as if to say to me, "We give up.n The latter has given me more time and energy to engage in the life of our parishes, but the status quo remains less than ideal. Thankfully, Bishop McClory recently suggested a course of action that (long story short) I have agreed to take.

In Alma, Michigan is a community of religious sisters-the Sisters of Mercy-who specialize in care for priests and religious who have encountered medical issues which impact their ministry. These sisters, who live as loyal handmaids of the Church and work as medical doctors, social workers, registered nurses, etc., run a program which not only performs a full physiological and psychological assessment but also provides priests and religious with the advice and resources needed to best thrive in their ministries in light of their health conditions. (For more information on the hospital they run, you can go to SacredHeartMercy.org.)


Since the bishop anticipates that I will be accepted into their next upcoming program, I plan to be away from Michigan City from ea􀂽y April through June of this year. I look ahead to April with some nervousness but mostly with optimism and hope: several other priests I know have either gone through the Sisters of Mercy's program themselves or have friends who have done so, and their praise is effusive and unanimous.


I ask that you give Fr. Dave your understanding and support as he and the parish staff adapt to the challenges of two months without a sacramental assistant; and, of course, I'd appreciate it if you'd continue to pray for me!

Your servant in Christ,

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