Something which has stuck with me over the years, is the practice of Benedictine Monks to celebrate the day of their brothers’ passing. Throughout the calendar, the Brothers celebrate their brothers birthdays into Eternal Life.
Over the years, I’ve shed so many tears, of joy and sorrow, for my precious boys. I shed them today for my first born son, Jose Arroyo.
Cayden Arroyo, my grandson, passed away this morning at 9:47 AM (MDT). His Father, my son Jose’, was able to be with his son as he passed.
Through the grief, I try to focus on the joy and what Cayden meant to all who loved him. His short life was a blessing. Please pray for Cayden’s mother, father, brothers and sisters. I do wish to thank my friends, my brothers in the Knights of Columbus, and family who offered their prayers and support since Cayden was diagnosed with the brain tumor just over two years ago. I thank Fr. Boniface Timothy M. Copelin and the community at St. Gregory’s Abbey for their Masses and prayers.
My precious sons, José, Matthew Arroyo, Michael Arroyo and Andrew Fort, I love you.
Eternal rest grant to him, O Lord; and let light perpetual shine upon him. May his soul, and the souls of all the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace.Share on Facebook
There are 3 characters to the parable of the Prodigal Son: the youngest son, of course, the elder son, and the father. Three perspectives.
The elder son is often seen as vindictive, bad. That’s not really the case. He’s like most of us, he’s worked hard, always been a good son and resents that his brother has been jumped to the front of the line after, what he perceives as him spitting in his father’s face. He loves his father and, in his way, is trying to protect him. He’s also, on the other hand, apparently kept tabs on his younger brother since he does know what he’s been up to! Probably during this time he was away, he’s made attempts to talk reason to his little brother but without result. He probably does resent the fact that his brother wouldn’t listen to him.
The father, on the other hand, is a parent who has experienced loss before. There is no mention of the mother, his wife. The father has lost those he loved before and, at the sight of his youngest son coming down the road, sees his dead son rising from the Dead! He is elated! A grief that he has had to live with instantly gone! How would any of us feel if a long lost loved one is miraculously walking up to our front door? How do any of us parents feel when we hear of the various troubles our children go through? This parent heard of the things his son was into then simply seemed to drop off the face of the Earth! He thought he’d succumbed to his many sins, died. But, now, he’s alive! What a cause for celebration!
We are all in this story. We are the father greeting his lost child, we are the older brother resenting his little brother for squandering his gifts, and we are the younger brother, the Prodigal Son who is so in need of the Mercy of the Father!Share on Facebook
I haven’t posted on here in a long time but this news has stirred me to speak up. First of all, here is a link to donate:
In the fall of 1979, right after graduating from Claremore High School, I walked onto the campus of St. Gregory’s College in Shawnee, OK. I had been Confirmed earlier in the year and was eager to study under some of the Titans in Liberal Arts. I was naive but eager to learn.
I came onto a campus where the professors cared about the students, where, if you missed a class because I was ill (or hungover), I could expect one of my professors knocking on my dorm room door! During my two years there, I learned, served in parishes with Fr. Augustine, smoked pipes and cigars with Tim Copelin (later Very Rev. Fr. Boniface Copelin, O.S.B.), learned history from Fr. Joe Murphy, O.S.B., learned about the “Ultimate reality” from Fr. Theodore, OSB, had walking Confessions with Fr. Ian, OSB and learned how to BE Catholic rather than just be.
Sometimes it seemed like Fr. Denis intimidated as much as taught but, in the years since, I have realized the value of his Logic and Philosophy lessons. He taught us to stand up for what we believed in. I don’t know about others, but I know that I left his classes with a conviction to stand up for what I believe and proud of my work. Fr. Joachim showed me the reality of God is the only existence that is truly Real.
I pray that this experience, as it was passed down for a hundred years before I arrived, will be shared for more generations to follow. Keep the Monks of St. Gregory’s Abbey in your prayers and do what you can to keep those doors open for the next generation.Share on Facebook
I was thinking about our life expectancy in the 21st Century. Well, honestly, thinking about those loved ones who’ve gone before. I realized that, as we grow longer lives, we stay young just as long! We really do grow older, not younger. For those that live 80, 90 or 100 years, it just means they’ve been old longer! Not that they’ve been young longer.
No one will look back at my funeral if I live to be 100 and comment on how young I was at 55! For my uncle at 55 when he passed, he wasn’t ‘at the end of his life’ at that time. Young and old are concepts that we have which really no meaning unless we’re at one end or the other. The only ‘end’ that is determined is the beginning, a 15 year old is young, a 40 yr old is ‘old’. So, oddly enough, our increased life expediencies have only served to make us “old” longer, not young longer. Youth is gone when it is gone and never comes back.
Despite the longer life spans, we still need the promise of the Resurrection. From here, the promise of Christmas, of new birth, comes real “Youth” that never grows old. I’m always going to see my boys as babies, but that is perception, not reality. The only true reality comes through Faith.
Peace and prayers this season of the Nativity of Our Lord.Share on Facebook