‘You taught us how to carry our crosses’
Young retired as a priest in July. Before his retirement, Prats offered a personal reflection on Young before a Mass for Young at St. Peter Catholic Church in June. The reflection can be watched in this YouTube video posted by the church.
Addressing Young, Prats said: “It was an absolute gift to work with you as your pastoral associate for eight of the 10 years you were here at St. Peter parish.”
Prats reminisced over the wonderful renovations and improvements that Young brought to the church. She even reflected on Young’s joyful sense of humor.
Prats said that “the greatest legacy” that Young would leave the parish is his example in showing the parishioners how to suffer.
“You taught us how to carry our crosses,” Prats said. During her speech, she mentioned that she felt called to volunteer in a caretaking role for Young as his health declined, which led her to leave her role as a church staff member.
She described her time taking care of Young as “the most humble service” and said she was grateful.
In her speech, Prats mentioned a “sacred moment” when a glimpse of Young’s inner prayer life was revealed to the parish. The moment was when Young shared a prayer he prays before Mass to some young children making their first holy Communion.
According to Prats, the prayer is: “Lord, grant me the grace to celebrate this Mass as if it was my first Mass, as if it was my last Mass, and as if it was my only Mass.”
“May Father Otis’ personal prayer become our prayer today at this Mass and from this day forward when we celebrate Mass,” she said.
“May we pass this prayer down to generations and to all who enter our doors here at St. Peter’s,” she said. “It will be in that prayer, his private prayer, that we will remember, Father Otis, that you walked in our midst as our pastor here at St. Peter’s and you touched our lives profoundly.”
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