DEACON WICKERN — A place called Gethsemane


The morning of the Feb. 25 began with planned blood tests and PET/CT Scans — a look to see what the effects of the treatment has had, good or bad.

I found myself with a growing nervousness as the time grew closer for these tests at the halfway point of treatment.

I know in my heart and mind that worry and concern would not change the outcome.

Still, the hope for good news or the possibility for bad news meant I did not sleep well the night before.

The results of the tests pointed out something quite different to me. The doctor who reviewed the scans was stumped — no good news but no BAD news.

The rest of the scheduled treatment went as planned and uneventful.

All this takes me back to the night of Feb. 24, the night I lost so much sleep in anticipation and dread for the tests and possible results.

Have I been placing too much trust in treatments and tests?

It’s the not knowing that drives us crazy, but isn’t that always a part of our human condition?

Thank God He understands!

Jesus always shows us the way. As He was facing the ultimate trial of His life, He entered the Garden of Gethsemane and asked the apostles to sit and pray for Him.

He entered and He wept. He asked if it was possible that this burden be lifted from Him, and accepting of the Fathers plan, He said your will be done.

I think this demonstrates Christ’s true nature more than any other place in the Gospels. His two natures. Our Lord Who is fully divine AND our Lord Who is fully human.

As Jesus wept and cried in the Garden, He gave His suffering to the Father.

My treatments, testing, sleepless night, and concerns for things beyond my control are my suffering.

My prayers are joined with all of yours. They are placed into the hands of the saints, who place into the arms of Mary. Our Mother places them at the feet of her Son.

My suffering, our sufferings, are joined with His suffering in the Garden and in His trials.

His great suffering brought about the greatest miracle the world has known since creation, our redemption.

Only He can take our suffering freely given and create a miraculous good.

Thank you for entering the Garden and praying with me.

And I continue to pray for you.

Deacon Wickern assists the pastor of St. Ann Parish in Warsaw and the Mission of Ss. Peter and Paul in Cole Camp.