Thank You, Lord, For Such Men...Fatherhood

The Crescat has a wonderful post up about Fatherhood and daughters, the traditional family and its worth. Included are some linked studies on the topic, too. I hope you'll check it out.

A flood of thoughts came to me after reading it. I responded to her post.
"Children need to see how a man and woman interact and express love if they are too grow up and have healthy relationships with members of the opposite sex."
Yes.  Even a present Father needs to have this forefront in his mind, generous with his time to his daughter and love of his wife. His daughter and his sons will soak in that role model."


In my father's generation, Fatherhood wasn't as hands on as it can be today. I can see how even with a traditional family I could have fallen into the behaviors of the fatherless the Crescat writes about.  I have a good father and, for undeserving reasons, I won the lottery with my husband. My father will be the first to say so. He sees a helpmate to me in my husband and a playful father in his son-in-law.

We adore our children, of course and would accept them anyway God gave them to us. Which led my husband once to ask me, knowing how much I loved being a boy mommy, having 3 sons and pregnant with our 4th child, why I was hoping for a girl? I told him that I wanted a girl to have the opportunity to have him for a father...to be a daughter to a father like him.  I wanted to see that and live that. Thank you, Lord, for giving my baby girl that dream come true.

On top of all that, my husband has and shows a love beyond us, his wife and children. We know He loves his Catholic faith even more, wanting to be in the next life loving his Savior face to face...always present on his mind and in his words and actions. And yet that Love spills, overflowing back into his family in his unselfish service to us.

To me, to his children, we think he glows with inspiration.

I have heard from people who notice it too, but the time it was spoken most poetically (to me) was from a priest I never met. My Aunty Bettina had died and plans were being made for her funeral in my home state a little more than an hour from where we live now.  Aunty had wanted a Catholic funeral, but her children and husband were not practicing Catholics and so they honored my husband by asking him to help with arrangements.  He handled speaking with the priest, arranging readings and served the Priest at the Mass.  The morning of the funeral Mass we were all dressed and ready for our early drive. Showered, in dress clothes, I had even applied make-up which I normally don't wear. Then my 2nd son started feeling nauseous.  With responsibilities ahead for him, my husband took the other 3 children and I stayed home and grieved my loss with my sick son, offering up my disappointment for her eternal rest. But the priest did call me. He called a couple of times. We had delightful conversations before and after the Mass. We talked about Aunty and the faith. He spoke about all his years of priesthood and how families and churches had changed.

When he called a 2nd time after the Mass I wondered what we hadn't talked about? Was there something he was trying to say?  I was charmed and grateful that a busy priest took the time to call and chat, I wasn't annoyed in the least!  But I wondered, was there something else he was trying to say?

He complimented my children, he spoke about needing to see a family committed to their faith and then he said,

"Allison, there's something I want to say about your husband. I feel I need to say it to you and you will understand what I mean and why I say it. When I saw him at prayer, when I saw him serving at the altar...well, there would have been a time where I would have sadly thought that he missed his vocation. He should have been a priest."   (This is not something I hadn't thought of either.)  " But now, at this time, and seeing him with his children, I know that God placed him perfectly. We need fathers like him, husbands like him, bringing forward a new generation to love and serve our Church."

With tears, I agreed. I understood. I have to believe God wants it so, as I am so grateful to be a beneficiary. And though, with our fallen nature, we are all bound to make mistakes, that it all might not turn our perfectly, I see a husband who puts himself last, puts God first and generously attends to his children's good and the needs of his Church. Also, I see a priest who put my needs first, but not ahead of God's and who was generous in words of kindness...a father to me and his Church.  Suddenly, I want to call him.

Thank you, Lord, for such men.

I know they serve You and in doing so... lives are changed.

GOD BLESS THE FATHERS! St. Joseph and Our Lady, intercede for them.

6 comments:

Gardenia said...

Allison, this is the most beautiful post, I must say. So many parts of it touched me. How generous of that priest to call you and tell you of his observations (even though we know the wonderfulness of our spouses, we delight in hearing it from others, from people who know so little of our husbands and yet can see their finest qualities in such a short period). We wonder where husbands such as your have learned to be such hands on fathers, when, like you, many of our generation have fathers who were loving and good but not so very hands. That was the momma's role. At that time.

How truly selfless of you to have wanted a daughter so that she could experience the father daughter love, and so your husband could too. Of course, who can resist a mother daughter relationship as well ;), and I imagine your joy overflowed as well.

I loved your comment to Crescat -- how true, and how very important.

Love your St. Joseph and Jesus image too (is that Charles Bosseron Chambers I think).

The Crescat said...

Agreed, this is a very lovely post and you are very blessed. I pray to one day meet a man who will not only be a good father but will also pray with me and help keep my spiritually lazy butt out of hell. I mean, isn't that what spouses are supposed to do - help us reach sanctity.

Christine said...

You are indeed blessed to have married such a man. Having suffered through 11 years of a very bad (and sacramentally invalid) "marriage", I can tell you that good men are hard to find. Be good to your man! He is a gift.

Allison said...

Dear Gardenia - As I wrote on your blog, I love seeing the joy in your daughter's face. From it is so evident to see the love in your family, the blessings. Thank you for your kind words and what you are sharing on your blog. As for the art, I would have to look it up, but it is such a heart-warming image.

Dear Crescat - Joining you in prayer, especially because I can be spiritually lazy too. In fact, I can be such an opposite of my husband that I joke that I am a saint-enabler. I thank you for the blog post you wrote that inspired this one. Grateful for where it took me. Last night I was reading before bed and felt like God had constructed all of this for my spiritual growth. What I read from you, how it made me feel, what I then wrote, how some in the secular world called it "offensive" and "creepy" and then the words I feel God led me to that put that all in perspective.

"We have a duty to perform, a thing which has lost it's meaning in our modern, hedonistic culture. The duty to which Christ calls us is to follow Him, not serve ourselves. No cheers of congratulation awaited Jesus on top of Golgotha. When it is all said and done, we must do what we ought to do. That is all. Every man and woman with the prefix "Saint" added to their name by the Church has done no less and no more." - William Biersach

It is right to commend fatherhood, to see it's good and to speak up for traditional families. Thank you for doing so.

Lexey said...

Beautiful post!! We have no daughters but you put it so perfectly, I see young girls who's Dad's remembered to give them a Valentine, and treat them with the care they deserve and should always expect from a man in their life. Wonderful blog!

stef said...

Oh Amen, Amen!!! Thank You Lord for faithful fathers. We are so blessed to be married to them. They are priceless! God bless you and your hubby, Allison.

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