At the beginning of my vacation, I spent a day with my nephew, his wife and their eight-year-old son. My nephew and his son were Pokémon hunting throughout the day, and he gave me a little glimpse into how this trend works. There are certain spots where you can find one of these characters, but only if you have the proper app on your phone. I suppose that the company enters certain coordinates into their app so that if your phone is at the right place, you find these characters. You then try to entice them or trick them with the app so that you “capture” them and then take them with you. I thought there had to be some way to use that craze in a homily, but I think I’ll use it in today’s column. After all, there is going to be some hunting going on starting this week. School begins.
First of all, many of us go through life not knowing that we are surrounded by Pokémon characters (and, for myself, not caring). Many people go through life not knowing (or caring) about the wisdom that is available to us. The greatest wisdom, of course, is to know God. There are signs of His goodness all around us. How easily we miss these signs, however, because we are busy with our own concerns.
To find a Pokémon, you need an app. To find wisdom, particularly as it relates to God, you need more than an app. You need teachers who are willing to offer guidance as well as information. You need tools such as critical thinking that a school can impart so that you can use what you learn, as you need to “train” your Pokémon. This week, the hunt for wisdom begins. Our new principal Mrs. Militzer, our staff and our teachers join me in the excitement of welcoming the students back to St. Malachy School. I admit that I still think school is not supposed to begin until after Labor Day, as when I was a child. But still I am excited to begin a new year and to see the students grow (in the same way Luke’s gospel describes the child Jesus growing) in wisdom, age and grace.
The young people I saw hunting Pokémon Go characters were very excited at the challenge and at each discovery. I pray that our students, teachers and families are just as excited at finding the wisdom that is God’s special gift to us.