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If you’re looking for a hero, don’t need to look far

Everyone needs a hero. As Catholic Christians, we, of course, have Christ, much more than a hero, but certainly a model for our lives. We also have the lives of all sorts of saints to hold up as standards for living, prayer, faith, service and much more.

But most of us also have heroes of the more common variety – great leaders, great writers, great thinkers, great athletes, great artists … great human beings. We follow the lives of our heroes from afar (or study the lives of those no longer living), seeking example, inspiration and perhaps even validation.

And there’s nothing wrong with that.

Sometimes, though, we needn’t look so far to find heroes. Sometimes they are as close as a family member, a friend, a fellow parishioner, a co-worker.

That’s the case with Jim Fisher, a former Creighton Prep math teacher, who has ataxia, a neurological disorder that creates a variety of physical challenges. But, as you can read in senior writer Mike May’s story on Page 11, the condition hasn’t diminished Jim’s faith. In fact, his faith might be stronger.

As you’ll read, strengthened by that faith, Jim is making a difference in the lives of many people every day.

Sure, he probably faces those down days that can come with life, but Mike’s story reflects a man who is more of a "why not" than a "what if" kind of guy.

Why not share the faith?

Why not be a presence of Christ?

Why not be an example of love?

Whatever it might be called or however it might be described, we would do well to bottle up Jim’s approach to life and share it with the world. He not only experiences his faith, he lives his faith.

All sorts of words and phrases could be used to describe Jim Fisher. But there’s no need to be verbose, no need to go to the Thesaurus to string together some impressive collection of words and phrases. Simple is better. Jim is a hero.

 

HELPING OUT

Winners in this year’s Colors of Christmas art contest are featured in this issue, and while we’re pleased to celebrate the creative talents of the winners, we also honor the effort of every student entering this year’s contest – a total of 2,443 – and what that means for the hungry.

The entries generated more than 100 cases of canned goods to be divided among food pantries in Columbus, Norfolk and Walthill.

This year the food donation – sponsored by Woodhouse Auto Family – had a few silent partners. The art contest is open to students in grades K-6, but 22 seventh-grade students at one school, plus two other seventh-graders from another school, also submitted artwork.

A school official said the students knew they weren’t eligible for prizes, but wanted to add to the total number of entries so more food could be donated to the poor. And they were.

Anyone wondering if the Year of Mercy message was connecting with young people need not worry, at least in the case of those students.

They, like Jim Fisher, are making a difference in the world.

Colors of Christmas sponsors also are making a difference in their support of this annual contest. In addition to Woodhouse Auto Family as the food sponsor, Catholic Mutual Group provided funding as the underwriter sponsor, and participating sponsors the Cosgrave Company, Divine Truth Christian Store, Gloria Deo and Parables all provided financial support and the gift cards going to the contest winners.

Thanks to our sponsors for their part in this special celebration of the season.

Merry Christmas.

 

Deacon Randy Grosse is editor and general manager of the Catholic Voice. Contact him at ragrosse@archomaha.org.

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