Thursday, July 01, 2010

My Son

Last night my wife and I had dinner with our youngest son and the priest who presided at our wedding. After I left the monastery many years ago, I worked at a church and I lived with this priest. At a recent gathering of priests and seminarians he met my son who informed him who he was and who his parents were. Soon after that we reconnected and planned last night's dinner. One of the highlights of the dinner for me was seeing the positive changes in my son. He went through a difficult time about six months ago but last night he seemed genuinely happy with his life. I think a big reason for this is the influence of some very positive role models. His spiritual advisor is a well known and respected priest that I also admire and respect. In addition to that my son is living in the inner city this summer working with an activist priest who is also well known and respected. With all of the bad press that Catholic priests have received in recent years because of the sex abuse crisis, I'm very happy that my son is seeing and directly experiencing the work, holiness, and goodness of some really good priests. If all continues to go well for Nick, he will be ordained a deacon in two years and a priest in three years. In my blog from yesterday I wrote that I feel like a man "who has left home and is wandering in the desert". I referred to the Catholic Church as my spiritual home and I wondered if I would ever return home again. Last night, when I looked at my son, it occurred to me that he may be my savior. It may be through him that I find my way back to a comfortable relationship with the Church. Occasionally I have even daydreamed about working with Nick someday by helping and supporting his ministry. Life is such a mystery. I could not have imagined when I was 22 years old, single, and living with the priest that I had dinner with last night, that 37 years later this priest would be a friend and mentor to my son who will soon be a priest himself. Who of us has any clue about where we will be or what we will be doing five or ten years down the road?

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