A Businessman’s Reflections

These Reflections by George E. Schulhoff, President of Schulhoff Equipment Rental Inc. were given at the special 50th Anniversary Mass of Thanksgiving to the Holy Spirit PENTECOST May 18, 1986

Today we take this opportunity to give public thanks to Almighty God. First to Our Heavenly Father for having created us; for having put us into existence. If Our Father had not given us life - made it possible for us to exist- we could never have enjoyed Him or this beautiful world that he created. Aside from all of this, He sent us His Son who not only redeemed us and taught us, but made it possible for us to actually consume His body.

Our Lord Jesus Christ and Our Father then sent their Holy Spirit to be our companion and sanctifier. All of us were created to serve Our Father in some particular way and be happy with Him.

The Holy Spirit, our sanctifier, has shown me personally the tremendous rewards to be received by serving Our Father. The Holy Spirit taught me not to expect Our Father to serve me with minor miracles every time my human nature desires something I think would be good, but accept anything He wills or permits to happen to me.

All through my early years, I endured many handicaps that prevented me from succeeding in most everything I attempted. During all my school years, I was unable to receive a passing grade. My inferiority complex and self-consciousness were extreme. On November 15, 1925, while spending my second year in the 6th grade, I was confirmed. I was confident, I would now receive the wisdom, knowledge and understanding that I lacked. When I returned to my seat after receiving the sacrament, I closed my eyes and waited for it to happen. In the years to come, I begged the Holy Spirit for these gifts which I had been told would receive when I was confirmed. But school was no easier. At the time nothing "seemed" to change, but I persisted and eight years later was ”conscious" for the first time that I was receiving the gifts made available to me when I was confirmed.

As I became more intimate with the Holy Spirit and learned to accept His seven gifts of Wisdom, Knowledge, Understanding, Counsel, Fortitude, Piety and Fear of the Lord, I saw that I could succeed with His help in spite of my handicaps and even overcome some. As I grew in knowledge of the Holy Spirit, as my companion and sanctifier, I was given to know in no uncertain terms which way I personally was to serve Our Father.

I had a great fear of marriage (due to the divorces and bad examples others had given me). I told the Holy Spirit it was up to Him to direct me to a good wife, if I were to marry. We have shared our faith and convictions and support each other in what we believe the Holy Spirit wants of us. My wife's life with me has not always been easy (at this point my good wife Emy would say "You can say that again.") Within the next nine months, we will have been together 50 years plus three years of courtship and have experienced great peace and happiness. As I look back, I realize the Holy Spirit could not have directed me to a more suitable or loving wife.

At another time I prayed intensely that the Holy Spirit would lead me to someone who would take as much interest in my business as I did. One day while addressing a small group of men, I announced we were looking for a man who was willing to work part-time or moonlight. One of these men came forward and stated it was just what he had been looking for. He told me (when he started 28 years ago) that he had prayed incessantly for additional work to support his family. This man who took this part-time job turned out to be our General Manager today.

Another young man who had been an employee previously and quit ( the spiritual atmosphere he said turned him off) rang my doorbell one night at 8 p.m. seven years ago. He told me he had been praying and felt he was being prompted to return because of the spiritual atmosphere of the business. He has been with us since and is now coordinator of the Apostles of the Holy Spirit.

A little over ten years ago, a young man (who I had only seen once before on a business transaction) approached me stating "He was not satisfied with his present employment." He stated while he was a college graduate, he would be willing to start at minimum wage if we would teach him the business and in addition make it possible for him to attend noon mass. Another condition he proposed was that he would have the opportunity to sit down every now and then and discuss his spiritual life. This man today has worked himself to the position of sales manager. (With the help of the Holy Spirit, he would add). He also is one of the present four Trustees of the Apostles of the Holy Spirit.

A young lady (who we now know was also sent to us by the Holy Spirit) had prayed for years for something to give her life meaning. A year after starting with us she became a convert to the church and now ten years later this new faith continues to be the most important thing in her life. Through she has taken time out from the business to have a family, she is still active as a Trustee of the Apostles of the Holy Spirit, along with our Sales Manager and General Manager.

I have found the Holy Spirit works in very mysterious ways. It is interesting to note that seven of our former employees learned the business with us and are now competitors. We are all friends, send customers to each other, and buy as a group from the same manufacturers, and in this way are able to help each other.

After 60 years of seeking daily and continually, the seven gifts of the Holy Spirit we are so grateful that the business has helped hundreds of acquaintances, employees and customers to a life closer to God. Five employees play a vital part in the movement of the Apostles of the Holy Spirit. A half dozen other employees are active participants. None of these are pressured to take part in this movement. On the contrary, we depend entirely on the Holy Spirit to motivate them.

Another interesting experience of my life was the fact as a child not being from a family of material wealth, I worried continually that I would not be able to make a living or support a wife. But by listening and using the gifts of the Holy Spirit we (unbelievably) are in position today to employ many others and help them earn a living. All of those connected with the business we believe were guided to us or we to them though the promptings of the Holy Spirit.

We could go on indefinitely with individual and actual experiences, but believe by pointing out just a few, you can realize the gratitude and love we have today to the Holy Spirit, our companion and sanctifier.