I had the blessed privilege of serving as Fr. Al Lauer's chief editor for this booklet, One Bread, One Body (OBOB), for the last ten years of his life. He would never have mentioned what he endured to feed you with God's word, but today's first reading from Colossians would have been dear to his heart.
He found his "joy in the suffering" he endured "for you" (Col 1:24), his beloved readers of OBOB. In his own flesh, he took part in the sufferings of Christ for your sake (Col 1:24). He wrote page after page daily for twenty years, whether on his deathbed, in the hospital preparing for or recovering from surgery, in airports or on airplanes, or crowded public places if necessary. In his last few years, he continued to write teachings despite painful intestinal blockages and, eventually, terminal liver cancer.
He wished your "hearts to be strengthened and...closely united in love, enriched with full assurance by [your] knowledge of the mystery of God — namely Christ" (Col 2:2). He wanted to teach you "the full measure of wisdom," that is, the Scriptures and the teachings of the Church, "hoping to make" each of you "complete in Christ" (Col 1:28). "For this" he worked and struggled, "impelled by that energy of [the Lord's] which [was] so powerful a force within" him (Col 1:29).
Fr. Al Lauer loved each of you. If a man can so love and suffer for you, know for certain how much the more you are loved by Jesus, the God-Man, Who gave His life for you. Live in His love (Jn 15:9). "Then go and do the same" (Lk 10:37).
|Rescript: In accord with the Code of Canon Law, I hereby grant the Nihil Obstat ("Permission to Publish") for One Bread, One Body covering the period from August 1, 2005 through September 30, 2005.
†Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, February 8, 2005.