Summer Trip

By Greg Zambrano

This year, for several months, I have thought of driving to as many National Parks as possible in the summer while my kids are out of school.

The way I see it is that, at this point in their lives, their faith and relationship with God is developing, and I want them to see the world.

So, we packed up our family car and headed west.

It takes a few days to reach the first National Park that I had in mind, so, I added side trips on the way to see friends and family we had not seen in a while. We very much enjoyed seeing our very dear friend Dominican Father John Restrepo at his new assignment at Texas Tech University in Lubbock, Texas. He showed us the parish where he is the new pastor.

We went as far north as we could travel – due to the recent flooding in the area – in Yellowstone National Park. Our family traveled to new places that they had never before seen. The road took us to 10,000 feet above sea level – something we found difficult to adjust to. Seeing stalactites and stalagmites in the Carlsbad Caverns, New Mexico, was incredible, and so was the view from the rim of the Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park.

Everyone has their favorite – some cried when they saw Mount Rushmore for the first time; my enjoyment was seeing my kids learn and experience nature face-to-face with its immense diversity. Seeing and experiencing nature first hand is inspiring, quiet and calming – making it a popular destination for vacation.

What’s most present on mind is the other part of the trip – seeing Father John and family in Florida.

Nature is God’s creation. It provides for us, relaxes and inspires us; it points to a creator. But I witnessed the strong interaction my family created with loved ones. It is possible because there is eternal life inside every one of us.

Let us point toward God like nature does, but in a louder and more direct way. See you on Sunday at Mass.


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