Sunday, September 12, 2010

Fr. Mychal Judge

Reminders of 9/11 were all around us yesterday - on the net, newspapers and TV. We used the day as a time of prayer for the victims, their families, all the heroes who came to New York to save lives, and our country. Deacon Keith Fournier has written an article about that horrific day and about his hero, Father Mychal Judge - a holy priest who lost his life "laying it down for his friends." The article is well worth your read.

Ground Zero September, 10, 2010: Remembering my Ground Zero Hero

CHESAPEAKE, Va. - I landed in the Norfolk, Virginia airport early this morning, September 11, 2010. When I walked outside, all of the flags were appropriately at Half Staff. I had to change planes in New Jersey and the television screens in the airport were filled with reports on the events which have forever changed our Nation and every American. Those are the events which occurred on September 11, 2001 when we experienced as a Nation both our vulnerability and our strength.

When I awakened early this morning, I had my time of prayer in the Hotel Room. After praying the hours I reflected on the day. I remembered the priest who was one of the casualties of Ground Zero and is one of so many "Ground Zero Heroes. I share with our readers my experience of meeting him and my of that day, when he, along with so many others, became a Ground Zero Hero. His name is Fr. Mychal Judge.

I met Fr. Mychal Judge at LaGuardia Airport in 1999. I was out of breath, sweating and irritated. He was at peace.It was an unusually hot day, and I was literally running to make the plane. I almost missed the flight on Ireland's finest, Aer Lingus. Fr. Mike greeted me with that gregarious manner and those smiling Irish eyes that I would soon come to cherish because they revealed the essence of this wonderful priest of God.

"Glad to finally meet you, I have heard much about you," he said. "Cool down, you have made it." With those few words he calmed my spirit and seemed to lower my body temperature at least twenty degrees.I felt immediately comfortable in his presence. It was those smiling eyes and the presence of the God whom he served so well. Joy and peace seemed to emanate from those eyes.

We began a trip together that would forever change my view of life, the Church, the world and my own sense of a call to promote reconciliation in the Body of Christ, the Christian community and through her, to the world.I had been invited to be a part of a mission team to Northern Ireland called "Project Reconciliation" by Dennis Lynch, a friend and a true patriot.At the time I was serving the Presidential campaign of Steve Forbes. The mission (entirely funded by an anonymous gift from another great American whom I will now name-Steve Forbes) was a peace mission led by a contemporary hero of mine, Detective Steven McDonald.

Steven's story has been told and retold. I believe that it should be required reading for all who over the next few weeks seek to make sense out of the horrible violence that has besieged our beloved country.A police officer with a great career ahead of him, Steven had been on duty years ago as one of New York's finest. We have all experienced the quality of New York Officers over these last weeks.

Read the rest of the article HERE

Deacon Keith Fournier asks that you join with us and help in this vital mission by sending this article to your family, friends, and neighbors and adding our link ( to your own website, blog or social network. Let us broadcast, we are PROUD TO BE CATHOLIC!

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