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Nov 13, 2013 | Harvey Buxton

A Fishing Story

[Diolog Magazine]  I am a retired priest from the Diocese of Texas. In the 1980s I was rector of St. Augustine of Hippo, Galveston.I also had a full time position as an assistant director at the University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston.  


Being both inside and outside the institutional church allowed me to witness    the changes that were occurring within an expanding context. It was a Saturday morning, my only day off during the week and I wandered down to the docks looking for some fresh seafood.


When I arrived, the fishermen were tending their boats and washing their nets.  I stopped to say hello and asked them, “Why are you washing those fish nets with such vigor?” One of the fishermen replied, “Any good fisherman knows that stale nets repel the fish.”  I heard Jesus in that reply. 


I took it to heart and have regularly prayed asking the Holy Spirit ‘to wash our nets’ so we may attract souls not repel them. In the church without walls, God speaks to us in interesting ways. 


I am very grateful for the time I spent as a resident priest in the Diocese of Texas and for the many opportunities and help that came my way in this non-traditional ministry.