Blessing farmers, seeds, soil at St. Isidore Day
Plainville — In front of school children and farmers, Bishop Jerry Vincke asked a simple question to grade schooler Ayden McCune: “Do you want to become a saint?” The answer: “No” surprised the bishop and the crowd gathered. Father Brian Lager, pastor at Sacred Heart Parish, later explained “We talk about how many of the saints have died, which might not make it appealing.” “Ayden, you want to become a saint,” Bishop Vincke assured him. “Yes you do. That’s what the Lord wants for you — to become a saint.”
The May 15 gathering was in honor of St. Isidore, the patron saint of farmers. “He grew up in a very poor family. He spent 40 years working for the same landowner,” the bishop explained. “This landowner owned land and (St. Isidore) farmed the land.”
There are lessons to be gleaned from the life of the saint, he said. “Guess how he started every day?” Bishop Vincke said. “He started every day with praying. He went to Mass every day. He started off the day with God first. It is a great lesson for all of us. No matter where you are in life, no matter what you’re doing, always put God first.”
The annual St. Isidore Day celebration is hosted by the diocesan Rural Life Commission. The event includes Mass, blessing of the field and agricultural-related tours. Because Plainville has a grade school, the 75 school children attended Mass, and Bishop Vincke invited them up at the end to help him pray over and bless the “seeds and soil.” “There’s a lot of farmers here today, so we’re going to pray for them … for the farmers and for the seeds,” Bishop Vincke explained to the school children. “Do you know whose prayers God hears the most? It’s children’s. Your prayers go to God’s ears like that, as soon as you say something,” he said with a snap of his fingers.
Following Mass, the Bishop and farmers visited the wheat field of Bill and Karen McCune, north and a little west of Plainville.
“Father Brian (Lager) blessed one set of seeds, and you blessed the other,” Bill McCune said to the bishop. “We’ll see which yields better results.” He said he always has his pastor bless the seeds prior to planting them. “We’re really honored to have (St. Isidore Day) in Plainville,” McCune said. “We were real proud of that.” He said he appreciates the diocese taking the time to recognize the farming profession. “It’s no different than honoring our soldiers or police officers,” McCune said. “So many people are part of our everyday lives.”