|Challenge girls gather around Bishop Malone in his office at the chancery.|
Portland, Maine. May 18, 2010. This past May 4, 2010,
a group of Challenge girls met with Bishop Richard
Malone at the chancery in Portland, Maine. Their goal: to
get to know their bishop better, and to share their
experience of Challenge with him.
The bishop welcomed them into his
conference room by having a platter of cupcakes and treats
waiting for them. The girls showed the bishop a power
point presentation of the Walk for Life they attended in
Maine where they had last seen him and explained some
of the other apostolic projects they had done together.
Malone encouraged them to continue applying the lessons they were
learning through the Challenge Club and to value the gift
of a strong group of friends who are faithful Catholics
and who stick to their ideals and convictions.
He then invited
them to sit down and opened the floor to questions.
The girls were eager to get to know their bishop,
asking him about anything and everything: from his favorite color,
to his vocation story, to the motto of his episcopate.
As they were speaking, the girls’ parish priest, Father Frank
Murray, stepped in to greet the Challenge team. Fr Frank
just happened to be attending meetings at the chancery that
day. The girls learned from the bishop that their pastor
played an important role on some of the committees at
|The Challenge girls present a summary of their club's pro-life activities to Bishop Malone.|
Towards the end, the girls asked the bishop
what they could do to help him and he asked
them to pray for the diocese. He explained that the
percentage of those who actually live their faith and participate
in the sacraments is very low.
Then, with a big
smile, Bishop Malone offered to give the girls a tour
of the chancery. They had the opportunity to meet several
of the people who work side-by-side with the bishop. They
even got to go inside the bishop’s office and see
where he works and has his meetings. At the end,
the bishop gave the girls his blessing and the Challenge
girls gave him some flowers along with a spiritual bouquet.
was a small chapel near the entrance of the chancery
where the Challenge girls went at the end of their
visit with the bishop to say a prayer for him
and the diocese of Maine. It was a grace for
the girls to get to know their bishop, to see
how close he is to his flock, and to understand
a little more about what it means to be a
shepherd who lays down his life for the sheep.