20 March, 2011

I appreciate St. Paddy's Day has past, but it's never a bad day to share a bit of wisdom from the Irish

Murphy showed up at Mass one Sunday and the priest almost fell down when he saw him. He'd never been to church in his life.

After Mass, the priest caught up with him and said, "Murphy, I am so glad ya decided to come to Mass. What made ya come?"

Murphy said, "I got to be honest with you Father, a while back, I misplaced me hat and I really, really love that hat. I know that McGlynn had a hat just like mine and I knew he came to church every Sunday.. I also knew that he had to take off his hat during Mass and figured he would leave it in the back of church. So, I was going to leave after Communion and steal McGlynn's hat."

The priest said, "Well, Murphy, I notice that ya didn't steal McGlynn's hat. What changed your mind?"

Murphy replied, "Well, after I heard your sermon on the 10 Commandments, I decided that I didn't need to steal McGlynn's hat after all."

With a tear in his eye the priest gave Murphy a big smile and said; "After I talked about 'Thou Shalt Not Steal' ya decided you would rather do without your hat than burn in Hell?"

Murphy slowly shook his head. "No, Father, after ya talked about 'Thou Shalt Not Commit Adultery' I remembered where I left me hat."


  1. Larry reen20 March, 2011

    Tim: Have you heard about the death of Fr. Olsen ?

  2. Larry: No. What happened? I wasn't aware that he was ill.

    Fr. Tim

  3. Larry Green20 March, 2011

    I just heard that he died in a fire at the rectory in round lake at around midnight last night.

  4. Larry: Alas, it's true. Here's a link to the Observer story.


    I'm both sick at the death of a brother priest, and consoled with the reward that awaits him in the life to come. He was popular due to the goodness of his character AND because of the witness of his beliefs. I'd be honored to stand in his shoes come the day of my judgment.

    No one's perfect and I don't deny that he like every other human alive had his quirks or failings. But by either the balance of God or of man, George Olsen was a good man. His death is keen felt by many.

    Good Saint Joseph... pray for him.

    Fr. Tim

  5. Larry Green20 March, 2011

    You have expressed my sentiment as well Tim.
    I find it so shocking.

  6. Such sad news. I heard about it on the news but at the time they had not said who died in the fire. I'll remember this man in my prayers. Any word on how the fire started?


  7. Tim:
    I think it's a shame that not one other member of the clergy in our diocese who knew of this tragedy didn't have the decensy to contact you before you hearing through me.

  8. Just so you know. I did forward the sad news to you as soon as I heard.

  9. Larry: It is what it is. I've said quite openly that I'm not 'in the loop' (whatever that means these days) within the Diocese. I left Mattawa for my cottage on Sunday evening so the Chancery may have sent out a fax that I have yet to read. That is the usual medium for official communications. I have done nothing to merit any other notification, at least as far as the diocese is concerned.

    Put another way, I'm no doubt on the list... but I'm among the last to be told.

    Fr. Tim

  10. Larry: BTW, it's because of my tendency to speak my mind clearly and without undue polish when I deal with other clergy (including all of my Bishops), and because of my involvement in the Borne case that I am (if not entirely a'persona non gratis,) one of the least popular among my confreres. Evidently, at least on some level, I've broken some code with my repeated reportings of the presence of predators in our midst.

    However I did it at the seminary (and if they had listened to me, there are victims who would have been spared as I was never wrong); I've done the same as a priest. I make a HUGE distinction between revealing anyone's sinfulness and reporting a crime. I've broken no vow or legitimate obligation but, since I'm 'from away' (having been born in another diocese) I've always been labeled as being suspect in the eyes of my brother clergy.

    Doesn't bother me a bit.

    Fr. Tim

  11. Your kindness of letting me know is appreciated. Thanks.

    Fr. Tim

  12. I am sorry to hear about the death of Father Olsen. Such a tragedy and a huge loss for the Pembroke Diocese.

    I do not know how the other man who was in the rectory is doing, his visitor?

    Fr. Tim...when you said your: "one of the least popular among my confreres". & "I make a HUGE distinction between revealing anyone's sinfulness and reporting a crime."

    It's so brave of you to speak up about victims & so forth when you did.

    Fr. Tim do you read all posts before you let them be read by viewers?

    I want to say something to you but it would be wise only you to read it.


  13. Lina: All comments here are moderated before they are posted. If a comment is offered that is clearly marked as personal and not for public posting, I always respect the request. I hope that makes things clear for you.

    Also, I am not brave. I worked for years as a CAS worker in Pembroke and Petawawa. I followed up with a few years working as a therapist of children damaged in ways that would make people sick to their stomach. You know that I've publicly admitted to being sexual assaulted as a very young child and state as well that I have addressed those wounds and am all the stronger for it.

    Please hear me though. I am no better than anyone else. I sincerely believe that anyone who had my expertise and experience and was faced with a similar situation as I did would have acted in exactly the same way. My training, my ear and my trying to be an authentic priest of Jesus Christ meant that I was in the perfect place to be able to hear the often quiet cry of one who has be victimized as a child.

    Ask Dr. Ben Hoffman, former owner of Concorde Mediation Services, which negotiated the first settlements in Cornwall and St. Joseph. He now works with Jimmy Carter in negotiating peace in regional African conflicts. He offered me the position of establishing the offices which were to be dedicated to serving and supporting victims in finding healing and peace in life. The only condition was that I would have to put aside my status as a priest to be acceptable to the victims representatives... It's easy to understand their position. They had no reason to trust any agent of the institution which enabled their assailants. I declined the offer, but remained committed to this cause. I have known and communicated with Sylvia, both on the phone and in writing for years before I ever discovered her excellent blog.

    Regarding Fr. George, I know through private confidences, that he did everything within his capacity to tend, aid and support people who were victimized in their lives... in a manner that was equally as meritorious, effective and concrete as anything I have done in living out his obligations as a Christian and as a priest. He was an model for all who knew him.

    Fr. Tim

  14. How are you doing Tim?

  15. Larry: All things being equal... pretty good! Certainly as good as I've ever been as a priest... and it has been a rewarding and fulfilling vocation, so I'd rate my quality of life very positively.

    Hope it's the same for you and your wife.

    Fr. Tim


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