Category Archives: Gratitude

Reflections from the Emergency Room – September 27 2017

Last night was rough. Called my cardiologist after spending too much time unconscious for us to take. “Go to the emergency room. We are going to admit you.”

UAB Birmingham – down town. Enter into the ER though a metal detector and police guard. About fifty poor souls packed the place. Profound poverty and bondage to drugs and sin. The area was filthy. Stephanie whispers in a sorrowful tone, “Please don’t pass out here.” I would have been on that floor, face down unconscious.

The poverty. Deeply sad for them. Baffled at a leftist socialist inspired system that keeps them all in bondage while claiming to care for them. The suffering is so great and the system is so profoundly evil.

I can understand why so many foolish but well intended Catholics embraced liberation theology. The problem is that when you try to implement enlightened social systems through the hands of the unregenerate, the power shifts, corrupts and then oppresses again. The only true hope for real change is through a mass revival and the restoration of the Church to its proper place in spreading the gospel through the liturgy and care for the poor.

The system oppresses, and then neatly hides the face of need from those who have the means to mitigate the need. They become numbers and political pawns. Deeply saddened. Surrounded by darkness.

Out of the darkness into the gray. Into triage. Into a room. Safe. Fr. Jerabek arrives just in time. Confession. Anointing of the sick. Love from a very good holy and faithful priest. So blessed.

Screaming in the hall. Drugs. Desperation. A place to stay. A fake illness to get admitted so he doesn’t have to sleep in the bushes or be assaulted in the night.

Coughing so hard – pass out again – safe on a bed. Completely exhausted. Morphine. Emotion. I hate that Stephanie has to watch her beloved lose consciousness over and over again. Cough pass out. Wake up – offer it up for RAZ and the seminarians and the requests of the beautiful ones of Apostoli Viae and the anawim in Puerto Rico.

Phone call from another beautiful priest – Fr. Chris Clay. Prayers over the phone and encouragement. So blessed.

My son and his wife arrive. What a gift to see them – it has been too long. They are happy. Coughing pass out. Seeing the tears in my son’s eyes with the morphine in my blood, tears flow. I am tired and really beat up. Sick of this. Offer it up for RAZ and her little one and for the seminarians.

We laugh and cry and share memories for hours.

My son prays lays hands on me with Stephanie and Julianne his wife. Through tears begs the Lord to help me. Past 1:00 AM and he needs to go. Deeply blessed by his faithfulness and care and his new career outside of law enforcement. He only needs to survive two more weeks.

Sleep a few hours. Wake up strengthened. Blessed by a remarkable wife and her devotion. Things I am grateful for:

  • Hope is never disappointed when it is placed in my blessed Jesus and our Most Holy and Merciful Trinity.
  • My wife – a truly extraordinary woman.
  • The ability to suffer and offer it up for so many. My offerings are a pittance but through God’s grace they are magnified and poured out in abundance on His beloved people.
  • EWTN – health coverage. The best health plan. So generous.
  • The best medical care in the world at UAB.
  • The generous care of our friend Deacon Neal Kay – retired cardiologist.
  • The prayers and comforting words of so many priests and religious.
  • The prayers and comforting words of my Apostoli Viae family.
  • The prayers and support from the National Catholic Register team – remarkable people.
  • Starbucks coffee and prayer in the hospital room.
  • The competence and dedication of the people in the organizations I am responsible for and how well things are going in all cases.
  • A remarkably kind hospital staff – especially considering the clientele they handle and how embittered they could be if they let it affect them.

I am blessed.

Coughing episodes twice. No passing out. Praise God. Offering up the suffering again. More medical treatment to come. Please Lord help the docs to come to clarity and a treatment plan that works.

Peace.