Monday, November 20, 2006

Witness to faith

Last month, a blogger wrote, "Today I found out the worst news of my life that both my parents have cancer. They have chosen not to have chemotherapy. I cried my little heart out because I love them both so much and what would I do without them? I recalled them after I stopped crying and they told me me they needed my strength and what was happening to them was God's Will. I will be a very strong person and be like the people during Lent suffering on the inside and not show it on the outside so I won't put any burden on anyone else. All I ask is that pray for me so I can be strong for my parents. I will be going up to Emmitsburg where there is a garden to get holy water. Maybe that will help."

Anon, I am very sorry to hear your news. I am praying for you, and ask others on here to do the same. Anon, good will come out of this! You may not see it now, but God has a Plan with all of this. A friend of mine from the seminary, Fr. Darin Didier, lost his battle to cancer shortly after being ordained a priest last year. God's Plan for Fr Darin had to do with him doing good as a priest briefly on Earth and eternally in Heaven (there have already been a few reports of ill people getting better after asking for his intercession).

The following are excerpts of a post that I wrote about Fr. Darin, "Living next to a saint":

"Darin and I were friends, classmates, and neighbors. I would hear him coughing through many a night in his last year of seminary. He rarely (if ever) complained about the cancer, and lived his simple yet joyful life as normally as ever. Darin was very athletic, intelligent, kind, enthusiastic, and loving. To me and many others, he was a saint. For nine months, I had the great honor of living next to a saint!

When he was first diagnosed with the cancer, he underwent radiation and chemotherapy, and had to leave the seminary. After a while, the doctors told him that the treatments were not working properly. Eventually, he was told by them that there was nothing more that they could do. So, Darin turned to natural supplements, a strict diet (he was already a health nut), and to priests. He had a few priests pray over him in the hopes of a healing. Basically, he put his whole life in the hands of God.

Amazingly...he was well enough to return to the seminary and resume his formation for priesthood. He continued a rigorous natural and supernatural diet... He was an heroic witness to the virtue of faith to so many people at and around the Mount, not to mention elsewhere. What courage!

The amazing gift for Fr Darin, obviously, is priesthood. He was cured long enough to be ordained. When a man is ordained a priest, it is forever. Fr Darin is a priest forever! I believe he is like John Paul II in the sense that he had a very short stay in Purgatory, and is now in Heaven. He endured the Cross in huge ways; now, he enjoys the fruits of Paradise with Almighty God and all the angels and saints."


At 11:37 AM, Anonymous B said...

I, too, am sorry to hear your sad news... i will be praying for you and your family!
This was a great post Fr Greg.

At 1:31 PM, Anonymous Kat said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

At 3:14 PM, Anonymous kelly said...

To the anon, I remember when you posted about your parents. You are also in my prayers as well. It sounds like your parents have great faith - you are blessed. Father Greg, thank you for sharing about Father Darin. It is a beautiful way to see his life on earth and how he went home as an ordained priest.

At 5:49 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Periodically I see people on this site say they just don't get much from going to mass or they can't relate to how other people seem to get the real presence. Also a lot of people write about suffering. What about the scripture that says the joy of the Lord is our strength? Is it possible to be joyful at all when you are suffering? How are priests able to keep serving without getting depressed by every one's sorrows/problems??? Can you have joy when life seems stressful and things go wrong.

At 9:33 PM, Anonymous sunshine said...

Father Greg,

I just got home and read your wonderful words. I was really touched by them!

Thank you.

It certainly was a great post and thank you for sharing about Fr. Darin.

At 9:36 PM, Anonymous sunshine said...

Fr. Darin was definately a saint! Wow!

At 9:37 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

To everybody,

Thank you for your support. My father was misdiagnosed because of our very common last name.

Talk about relief!

At 1:40 PM, Anonymous sunshine said...


I have been thinking the very same thing! Priests must have an incredible capacity to deal with the pain and sorrow of so many people. A LONG time ago when I was a kid I remember that there were a lot of priests in one parish so the burden wasn't as much as it is today. Priests really must be saints to be able to take all this and not get depressed.

At 7:45 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

We have to remember to pray for the priests we have and that more of those God is calling will enthusiastically say yes. Seminarians need our prayers too.

I think we also need to encourage our priests to take at least 1 day off each week. They need their own time with our Lord and they need time to kick back and enjoy some recreation. (Perhaps some golf??)


At 7:57 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hitting a little ball into a small hole would stress me out! How about skiing?

At 8:01 PM, Anonymous St. Teresa society member said...

Monsignor Panke is currently working with a great group of men who are in discernment for the priesthood for next year. Please keep those prayers coming.
Thank you and know that your prayer support is working!

It is hard to believe that next September we will be remembering the 10th anniversary of Mother Teresa's death. We can be certain that she is interceding for vocations and pleased that in the Archdiocese of Washington there are so many people "storming the Heavens" with prayers for
the Priesthood and Consecrated Life.

At 8:05 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

In addition to the above. One of the churches I attend mass at has a vocations chalice. Families can sign up for the vocations chalice. One family takes it for a week and prays for vocations. I think it is a nice tradition and more parishes should do it.

At 8:09 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Please keep as part of your Advent spiritual program, prayer and
sacrifices in the name of Vocations.


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