Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Priests in Need

Only a few years ago, I never dreamt that I would posting a blog note like this one: among the homeless and hungry are priests. With the growing bandwagon of individuals bringing accusations of misconduct against priests, many fine priests are now being flasely accused by those who see the opportunity for some very fine ill-gotten gains. In fact, an investigation into the situation in California indicates that approximately half of all allegations are false. When allegations are made, most priests find themselves immediately without a job, without an income, often without a vehicle, and, sadly, often without the support of their diocese. Sometimes the trials drag on for months, if not years, before the priest is cleared, and the priest can end up both during the process and even afterward on the street, hungry and homeless.

We had two priests in our parish, both proved innocent (seems to be against the law of the land that one has to prove innocence rather than an accuser having to prove guilt) who went through this difficult period. One ended up with no food at all at one point. Our parish helped, but not all parishes are wiling or able to do so.

One organization, Opus Bono Sacerdotti, helps priests in these circumstances. Currently, though, more than 1000 priests have turned to Opus Bono for assistance, and there is not enough money to go around. I learned this weekend that a new supplicant, Fr. Francis, has just been released from the hospital and has no food or medication. This is just one example of many. If you can help Fr. Francis or any other priest or contribute even a few dollars on a monthly basis to this good cause, please visit the Opus Bono website. You will find more information there about what Opus Bono does and a mechanism for donating. Similarly, if you know of a priest in desperate straits, please refer him to Opus Bono. They turn no one away and provide help with food, shelter, and, in extreme cases, safety.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

A New Book Especially for Widows

I have no idea how many widows, especially recent widows, are among the readers of this blog, but just in case there are a few I thought I would share information about a recently released book that can be of help to recently widowed women. The title is Widow: Surviving the First Year. It was written by Dr. Joanna Romer, an English professor and journalist who was widowed a couple of years ago and so has first-hand experience of that about which she writes. (Donnie, by the way, did the cover photography and design.) For those interested in the content, here is information about the topics covered in the book:
This book takes new widows on a journey from the first difficult days of widowhood through 12 months of self-discovery. Along the way, you will learn how to handle emotional challenges such as suddenly being alone; how to tackle painful tasks including cleaning out hubby's closet; and how to re-enter the world again in terms of work, personal development and socializing. Guidelines are provided for each new phase, making this book a practical self-help book you can use for re-creating your life.