WESTPORT—For most people, life is about three questions, said Bishop Robert Morneau last night in his talk at Assumption Church in Westport, “Who am I, Where am I going? How do I get there. ”
“But the real question is not who am I, but whose am I? To whom do I belong,” said the retired Auxiliary Bishop of Green Bay, Wisconsin.
Almost 200 turned out for his talk, which was sponsored by the Leadership Institute as part of the new Bishop’s Lecture Series.
He was introduced by Patrick Donovan, Executive Director of the Institute, who studied under him at the University of Notre Dame and was profoundly moved by his ability to weave poetry and spirituality together to produce powerful insights.
In a warm and engaging talk the retired Auxiliary Bishop of Green Bay, Wisconsin, shared his thoughts and reflections about the “Path to Holiness,” and the steps he outlined were simple and yet profound.
The Bishop said we are “Pilgrim People” who need a game plan and a way of living that fosters holiness that is rooted in Catholic identity and nurtured by humility and gratitude.
He encouraged those in attendance to use three words daily, “Please, Thanks, and Sorry.”
“We have to be filled with hope, hospitality, humor, and humility,” Bishop Morneau said, as he encouraged people to live simply, care deeply, serve generously, and speak kindly.
The Bishop said it is important to seek balance between worship, work, love, and leisure and to achieve a sense of perspective, pacing and proportion in life.
Catholics must find their identity as stewards and disciples of the Lord who are called to prayer, service, and sharing, he said.
“We are called to evangelize by sharing the Good News of God’s immense love and mercy manifest in the crucified and risen lord,” he said, urging the faithful to be agents of God’s light, love, and life.
Throughout his talk Bishop Morneau recited lines and entire poems from a diverse group of writers including Emily Dickinson, Gerard Manley Hopkins, and Jessica Powers along with contemporary writer David Waggoner.
He also reached into the writings of legendary UCLA basketball coach John Wooden and motivational author and speaker Stephen Covey.
Bishop Morneau received his episcopal consecration in 1979 from Pope John Paul II, and retired in 2013. He has authored several books and many of his essays appear in such periodicals as US Catholic, St. Anthony Messenger, America, and Emmanuel. In addition to writing, he gives retreats and lectures throughout the United States.
Bishop Morneau’s talk was followed by a reception downstairs and brief meet-and- greet session.
For information on upcoming talks and other programs and resources, visit the Leadership Institute at formationreimagined.org.