Friday, December 14, 2007
Feast of St. Mike of Chicago (undeclared)
December 15 is the birthday of my father Mike; The handsome young man on the right in the picture above. It is also the day that the Mass of Christian Burial will be said for his baby brother Ed (the one standing next to him in the picture: the man and woman beside them are their parents). Dad and Ed and their brother Don lived in Chicago before and during the depression. Dad got a great High School education because he found he had a knack for the game of football and parlayed that into a scholarship to the exclusive Christian Brothers run de la Salle Academy. He convinced his brother Ed to follow him. Don took another path and joined the Merchant Marines as soon as he was legally able.
After de La Salle, dad played College football at St Ambrose College in Davenport, IA for the great Moon Mullins. Again he convinced Ed to follow him to St. Ambrose to play football and get a good education. It was there that they met and married their respective wives. Two marriages that lasted a total of over 70 years and brought seventeen children into the world.
Uncle Ed told me more than once that Dad was his moral compass. Dad was strong and decisive, traits I wish I saw in myself a little more. I usually make the right decision, but it often takes me a little more thinking before I am sure.
I think it is an awesome God-incidence that My uncle Ed will be welcomed to the heavenly banquet (or the place of cleansing we call purgatory) on the date of His big brother's birthday. I am sure that His Moral Compass will be right there to guide his way.