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One thought on “December 28, 2014 – Fr. Terry O’Connell

  • Harold M. Frost, III, Ph.D.

    At age 72 now, I came from a broken family and all the disorder that it caused. In the aftermath of the divorce in the 1940s in New England (U.S.), the Roman Catholic Church did not offer pastoral assistance to my sister and myself. We were abandoned at the parish and diocesan levels due in part to the second marriage of my mother who as a Catholic was awarded custody of us two but whose first, mixed-faith marriage was never annulled. Only in adulthood in college, come after a Protestant upbringing, did I discover the Catholic Church and the Eucharist, the life of sacramental as well as special graces. Yet now, miraculously, I am a family man, married within the Catholic Church for over 50 years, with one child, a son who is autistic and lives under our roof to receive our care and guidance. So it is my hope during the current bi-synodal process on the family as overseen by the Roman Curia at the Vatican and as accompanied by the 8th World Day of Families Congress to be held in Philadelphia this coming September that the overlooked children of broken-up marriages of the past receive much more of the pastoral, programmatic and theological attention they deserve from the Church Fathers. That hope responds to my sense of a need of the community of the faithful in this age of the New Evangelization to assist these poor ‘step-children’ of the Church as they move forward into the many struggles that many of them throughout the world will and do have today in their own adulthood. This is an adulthood whose origins in childhood lacked exposure to and thus emulation of the selfsame role model of the Holy Family that the homilist spoke of, yet whose own vocation as human persons and relational beings within families arising from their decision-making can be realized well enough in the face of their own severe challenges to well-ordered living, to reflect the luminous obedience of faith with which the Holy Family of Mary, Joseph, and Jesus shone so well.