This morning at church Fr. Greg asked that all Fathers and Grandfathers stand and be recognized in prayer. As the musicians at Mass today, we had a birds eye view of the congregation. There sure are a lot of dads!
Since our parish has grown in leaps and bounds over the past five years, I no longer know all of the families - and dads. Yet, I do. They tell a story by their looks and actions.
I saw a young father affectionately ruffle his toddler's hair, while holding in his arms a baby.
I saw another dad look sternly at his little girl as she prepared to trot across the church bench in search of the unknown.
I saw a grandpa holding the hands of the two grandchildren he and his wife are raising.
I saw a dad standing all alone, his wife already in heaven, and children long gone to other pastures.
I saw a father glance proudly sideways at his teen towering over him.
I saw one dad kiss his baby's cheek as he handed the child to his own dad for safekeeping.
I saw our spiritual dad stand at the altar, leading us in prayer, and then encouraging everyone, especially the dads, to stick around after Mass for yummy donuts iced with chocolate, vanilla, and strawberry.
And in all of these dads I saw the hand of our ultimate dad, God - guiding them, encouraging them, helping them along the way.
My own dad is no longer with me. Jim's dad died many years ago. I miss them both. But as I looked around me today, I felt encouraged that there are many wonderful dads in this world. I want to thank each and every one of them for their roles in the lives of our future.
My daughter, Julie, blogged a tribute to her daddy the other day. Not because it was Father's Day, but just because she felt like it. Her timing was perfect though. You can read about what a wonderful daddy she has here