My name is Fr. Patrick Gonyeau and I am thrilled to be joining you as your new associate pastor. Life is such a gift and I’m so very grateful to have been given the gift of faith in Jesus that truly gives every day meaning. I often think “what could be more interesting than a person?” Made in God’s image and likeness, people amaze me. Indeed, if you watch the news they’ll amaze you sometimes in ways you sure wish they wouldn’t, but still, how beautiful is God’s gift of human life? I have 13 nieces and nephews (and four brothers and three sisters too!) and holding a newborn baby simply takes your breath away. My Mom, Patricia (she rocks and I’m named after her!) says that seeing the face of a newborn is like seeing the face of God. So I’m going on and on here about why I love people, but here’s one reason we should all really love people and pray for them: God loves them. Jesus bled and died for every person our eyes will ever set sight on…wow. If we could just really get this one thing down that Jesus said: love one another as I have loved you…I’m sure we’d be rapidly on our way to sainthood. But alas, many of us know the experience of seemingly running a few steps and falling, running a few more and then falling again..
The beauty of falling though is looking in the eyes of Jesus as he helps us up again and again, never looking at us with disgust, only with love and mercy, urging us on to our ultimate destiny which he assures us we’ll know if we’ll give him our hearts everyday and allow his grace to lead us in the way, the truth and the life that is life in Christ. I love Jesus, I love His beautiful bride the Church, I love life, I love people, and that’s why I’m really looking forward to meeting you.
So a little bit about me…I was born in Detroit and raised on the east side until I was 10 years old and then my family moved to Harper Woods. I graduated from Harper Woods High School and went to Michigan State on a caddy scholarship and graduated with a degree in Advertising with a specialization in Public Relations. My life at MSU though (besides the IZZONE and Spartan Football), was playing folk music. I greatly enjoy playing guitar and singing. Now I’d better admit: I love to sing but I’m not a great singer (I can get the job done, but won’t make anybody shed tearsJ) but really, who cares, let’s use these voices to glorify God! So after college I pursued folk music for a living and lived in Nashville, Tennesse for just under two years. At that point, I began to undergo a great conversion in my life (I’ll share that story two weeks from now in the bulletin) and at the age of 28 entered the seminary. I love being a priest, it has been amazing thus far, and the faithful friendship of Jesus just keeps getting better. And now…he’s brought me to you, and you to me, and for this I will continually praise Him!
God Bless You