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Good Morning Nanty Glo!
Happy Father's Day             Sunday, June 17 2001

Letting Go

As my wife and I work with foster children and their dysfunctional families where the father is often abusive or not in the picture at all, I better understand why I had a difficult time letting my father go. I had a very good father and friend.

When I think back to my youth, I can truly say that my father was a dad who loved and enjoyed his children. Also, he was a father who could be strict and taught by example rather than lecture. When I was a child playing with toys on the floor, it was very common for my dad to be right there on the floor with me. If my sisters and I didn't get up early enough on Christmas Day, Dad would make noise to wake us. He enjoyed Christmas as much as we kids. When I grew older and tried to climb every tree I saw, it didn't surprise me to get high into a tree and look across to the next tree and see my dad perched on a high limb smiling at me.

Dad wasn't a scholar, but he taught us the joy of books by reading to us when we were young and continuing to read books all his life. Dad never nagged us about good citizenship, but he never missed a chance to vote. He never preached to us about religion, but he attended church "religiously," going years without missing a Sunday. At one time or another, he served on nearly every board in the church.

He never lectured us on loving relationships but I never heard him and my mother exchange a cross word. He never talked about work ethics, but he worked hard all his life.

Dad and I grew especially close during the last year of his life as his health rapidly declined. Our roles reversed and I had to care for him. We both knew he was dying. He wanted to talk about it and I didn't. I refused to face up to the inevitable. I would cut him off every time he would bring up the subject of his dying.

On the other hand, Dad was at peace with the world and more importantly, he was at peace with his Lord and Savior. Only after his death did I realize how foolish and selfish I had been. I missed out on many tender moments by not letting him talk through what he was facing.

It took years for me to understand that he was trying to help me let go. Fortunately, by the time my mother got close to death, I had a better understanding of letting go. Rather than a time of anguish, my final moments with my mother were a spiritual experience in which I was sadly but willingly letting her go to her final reward.

I still regret that I didn't have the same experience with my father. Nevertheless, his dying taught me the fleeting nature of our mortality. There is a time for living and loving. And there is a time for letting go.

David Caldwell

Ways to "freak out" your colleagues

1. At lunch time, sit in your parked car with sunglasses on and point a hair dryer at passing cars. See if they slow down

2. Page yourself over the intercom. Don't disguise your voice.

3. Insist that your e-mail address is: www.Xena-Warrior-Princess@OCDSB.edu.on.ca.www.ElvistheKing@OCDSB.edu.

4. Every time someone asks you to do something, ask if they want fries with that.

5. Put your garbage can on your desk and label it "IN."

Sent by Zan

A Christian...

  • recognizes the presence and activity of Christ in the church, and in all life, even in the simplest and most mundane of its manifestations (see our Lord's parables, in particular Matt. 6.28-29);
  • believes that the church lives and grows in the strength of Christ (Matt. 16.18; 28.20);
  • believes that Christ reveals himself in the sacraments of the church, in her sanctification of the world, in her teaching and acts of service (1 Cor. 11.26; Matt. 18.19-20; Rom. 6.11; Matt. 28.18-20; Luke 10.16), but knows that not one of these aspects of the church's life is sufficient on its own, for Christ came as saviour, healer and teacher.
  • recognizes the line dividing Tradition (the spirit of faith and learning) from "traditions," many of which are associated with folklore and are impermanent accretions to religious life (Mark 7.8; Col. 2.8);
  • respects the ritual forms of devotion without forgetting for a moment that they are secondary in comparison with love for God and other people (Matt. 23.23-24; Mark 12.28-31).

From, A Credo for Today's Christian, by Fr. Alexander Men, the "last martyr" to Communism in Russia

Sent by Bishop Seraphim Sigrist, OCA
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