A source revealed that 80% of what we do depends on our eyes. Eighty percent is indeed a big chunk of activities, while totally blind people have an output of only 20% with regard to work. For the blind, this means goodbye to outdoor sports, goodbye to job opportunities because they have a limited number of them, goodbye to cross stitching, goodbye to movies and sightseeing, goodbye to window shopping and star gazing, goodbye to visual art and beautiful fall foliage. Yet, amidst these limitations, there lies a remarkable resilience.
As you might be aware, the Family Rosary Crusade that eventually became Holy Cross Family Ministries was founded by Father Patrick Peyton, C.S.C., because of a healing he received from tuberculosis after the medical doctors had told him that they did not have anything they could do about his illness. He turned to prayer through the intercession of Our Blessed Mother, and he was cured of that illness. The healing made him make a commitment to go out into the whole world and remind families about the power of prayer. Holy Cross Family Ministries is an organization that was founded on gratitude for a healing that was received by now Venerable Patrick Peyton.
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God can teach us in many ways. Yesterday, I felt like the wedding guest from the parable of the man who showed up at the feast wearing the wrong garment. As I joyfully sang out the last line of “Amazing Grace” at Mass. One of our friends here at the Peyton Center, Virginia, tapped me on the shoulder and pointed over to Father Pinto, who pointed to his chasuble, and, for some strange reason, with all the other priests, was wearing white vestments while I proudly was wearing green.
A husband kept pestering his wife about the way she drove the family's car. The husband had reasons to do so because the wife, fresh from driving school, had just gotten her new driver's license. At every turn and bend, every traffic light, overtaking and being overtaken by other vehicles, uphill and downhill, the husband unceasingly reacted with fear and panic and kept giving her directions. Fed up, the wife remarked angrily, "Better keep quiet! It is your lack of trust in me that's going to lead us to an accident."
I have heard this story about the committal service of a man. As the casket was about to be lowered into the grave, a mourner came forward and said, "He was a very nice man; he loaned me a hundred dollars, and I owe him that money." He took a hundred-dollar bill and placed it on the casket. Another man came forward, stating that he also owed the deceased a hundred dollars and wanted to pay him back at that very moment. He also placed a hundred-dollar bill on the casket. Then, as the undertaker was about to lower the casket into the grave, another man came forward and declared that he owed the deceased three hundred dollars.
Back in the old days, in the Quincy public schools, grades 7-9 were called junior high. In ninth grade, many of my classmates and I had Mr. Jack Buckley for history class. Mr. Buckley was a gifted teacher and storyteller who could draw you into any historical period of time, causing you to boo the villains, root for underdogs, and cheer on heroes, and have you wanting to know what happened next, even after the bell had rung. But his greatest gift was how he convinced each of us that we had some talent or gift that we should share with our class and the wider community.