To those who would be fathers

It’s another one of more than five dozen Father’s Days I’ve been alive to celebrate, and I’m thinking about Our Heavenly Father, and wondering why it never occurs to me to reach out to Him in special loving gratitude this day–His day.

And I’m thinking, too, about my husband and the very special Father’s Day on which we presented our first child to be Baptized “ the Name of the Father….”

And today at Mass, when the celebrant acknowledged all the fathers whose special day it is, and referred to himself as “an unwed father,” I was wondering how many of our Fathers who stand in persona Christi will be recognized today with a well-earned “Happy Father’s Day” greeting.

And now, in further pondering of the “unwed father” reference that had caught me by surprise a few hours ago, albeit in another context, I wonder not only about the fathers living outside marriage, but more so about the men whose children have been aborted—with or without their knowledge or consent. Especially, in that regard, my heart goes out to those men who desired life, not death for their unborn children, but were powerless to prevent their children’s abortion.

I think, too, of my son’s fatherhood—particularly the fatherhood of the son whose life could not be saved in utero, breaking his heart and his wife’s…and the hearts of all of us who yearned for that child to be born to us.

Lastly, I think of my earthly father, now at rest, and know, surely, as the Lord Jesus loved His earthly father, St. Joseph, that we can entrust to him, patron of the Universal Church, all the yearnings of our minds, and hearts, and souls with regard to all the father figures, living and deceased, in our lives.

God bless all the men who fulfill the role given to fathers, and the women who, out of necessity, stand in their place.

May God especially bless the fathers who protect us in war and peace, and those who have offered their lives so that we can live in one nation under God on this Father’s Day and every day. Amen.

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