Many years ago I was invited to a party at the home of an acquaintance who lived out a ways on the southern shore of Long Island. It wasn’t just another party, but something special in a home that was more than just a house. Let’s call it a mansion. The locale was not just any old suburban town, but it was like one of the Hamptons—a plush community that could have been the setting for “The Great Gatsby.” I didn’t know the hosts too well, but I was looking forward to the party for other reasons, as you might suspect.Read More
Dan and I first met in 1955 at Canisius High School where I was a senior and he a newly assigned Jesuit scholastic starting his teaching stint before ordination. We were surprised to find out that he was a veteran—who had lost one of his lungs in service, for that matter. None of us ever imagined Dan in military uniform. To us he was an unimposing, kindly figure who seemed temperamentally well-suited to be moderator of the poster club and the prefect of the school’s book store. We liked his friendly smile and wished him well, but no one regarded him as a contender for the faculty Wall of Fame. Dan just wasn’t the kind of heroic figure that we Crusaders took to heart as our champions.Read More
The photo of Juan that is unforgettable, at least for me, is the 1987 shot of him seated between his two fellow novices and their novice director, Fr. Felix Yaoch. in the rectory in Palau. They all have beaming smiles on their faces, as well they should. They were making history in an island group that had long been a mission served by other countries. Now Micronesia had its own Jesuit novitiate, its own Palauan novice master, and three island seminarians. It was a key event on the path toward the truly Micronesian church that we had all hoped for.Read More
We had no way of knowing, when young Dave Andrus entered the Society in 1971, what a treasure he would be for our mission in Micronesia. Born in Louisiana, Dave would spend most of his Jesuit life in these islands. More than that, he would become, in his own quiet and unassuming way, the lifeblood of the Pohnpei church for three decades or more.Read More
“Old soldiers never die; they just fade away.” Douglas McArthur used this saying to describe himself after his removal from the Korean War in the 1950s, but it could just as easily apply to Jack Curran. Jack did die, on January 4 this year, but only after a long decade of fading away due to his Alzheimer’s. He may not have intended it to happen that way, but Jack certainly made good on his promise to surrender to the Lord his “mind and memory” along with life and liberty. Not only that, but he did it with his characteristic good grace. His caretakers at Murray-Weigel loved him, people there say.Read More
Everyone used to call him Nico, but I preferred using first names. So I asked him one day why his parents had named him Adolfo. He smiled as he reminded me that Spain was involved in a violent civil war when he was born, and that the leader of one of the nations strongest in its support of the “Catholic side” of the war was a guy by the name of Adolf.
Nico, Adolfo, or whatever you want to call him, was the provincial of Japan about the same time I was superior in Micronesia. That was how we became friends. At the weekly semi-annual meetings of the superiors in the assistancy, I came to know and like him more and more during our time together.Read More