(quote) Kate-596166 said: Thank you Jerry so much for this topic.
I have a tough time each year around Father's day because
I miss my dad so much.
His name was Franjo (Francis). He
was a man of prayer, a devout Catholic, a leader, protector of his family, a
farmer, an honest, trustworthy and hardworking man.
My father was a true Catholic who lived his faith, walked
his faith, and died in his faith.
I lost him a long time ago but it feels like it was
yesterday. There are so many things I wish I could have told my father. The pain
that I feel sometimes is unbearable still after so many years. I miss the sound
of his voice and laughter. I also miss the talks we used to have and the advice
he used to give me.
When I was growing up in a small village
in Croatia, we had to go to daily mass. We would pray before and after meals.
Evening prayer was so long I would fall asleep most of the time. My father was
always leading the prayer. During the day, when the church bell sounded off at
noon time to remind people to pray, my father would go down on his knees and
pray "The Angelus." Anyone around him at that time would follow
My sister and I used to go with my father to the field
where he was working. We would try to help him, but we would always end up
playing hide and seek in the corn field. On the way to the field we would meet
neighbors and my father would stop for a little chat. They would always tell my
father how much I looked like him. He would just smile and pat me on my head. I
was so proud of that.
My parents loved each other very much. There was a gaze
between my parents I did not understand as a child. Now, I know the meaning of
that gaze. A sacramental and sacred marital bond between man and woman and at
the center of their marriage was God.
While my dad was dying surrounded by his wife, children
and close family, we asked him what we could do to ease his suffering. His eyes
would be closed and he would tell us to pray. After a while, he would open up
his eyes and look up towards the crucifix on the wall and say, "Only He will
help me." I remember him pointing at the crucified Lord and those being his last
I loved, admired and respected my father
so much. He was my hero. I have never met a man like him since.
Just by how he lived his life and what kind of man he was,
I see my Dad was like a saint.
Dad I miss you very much and will continue to love you
A good accounting of the times in Croatia when we were younger there. Just think, It appears we lived but less than 20 kilometers from one another when growing up, but never crossed paths, until here on CM.
I lived only but a mile from the Dakovo Cathedral in Slavonija, and remember well stopping all activity at noon too and praying the Angelus when the Cathedral bells would ring and be heard for miles and miles; and the prayers of Divine Mercy at 3pm; and Rosary after dinner ... and also at every country cross-road there would be a station of the cross of one sort or another, reminding us to always keep God with us. Now, those are mostly gone and the practices no longer practiced. Sigh.
It is good to read what you have to say about your father. I recall mine too when there, he too would take his hat off and get down on his knees at noon. In our case, as a family, mom always led the prayers at dad's instruction to do so.
Well, I am blessed to still have my dad. I am realizing that I am not giving him the due recognition he deserves, but that is likely just because I still have him here. If I thank him now, than the good Lord will have less to thank him for later, is how I see it. Yeah, ok, I know... :)
My most fond memory of my dad is the first day of school for me. He always worked it seems. But on that day, he took leave from work, came home, took me by the hand and walked me to school, about 1/2km away. He wasn't much of a talker. When we were about to pass folks along our walk, he grabbed my hand firmly and swung me up on his shoulders, then said to me. "Son, you are about to go further than your father has ever been, do me proud!" . I was his firstborn; I owe so much to him. He has laid down so much work for us and far exceeded any expectation anyone ever had of him. It really hasn't been that I've made him proud as he has made me be so proud of him. His sacrifice for us, mom and those he knew spans his lifetime. I trust God will not let his labor go unrewarded. He is suffering with early stages of dementia now.
So, ah, an interesting way for me to conclude my time here.