CATHOLIC PewPOINT for Friday-Tuesday, August 4-15, 2000
Making up for lost time with a great role model: my dad!
With today's issue we return to our daily agenda in a different way. You'll be able to access any day over the next upcoming twelve days in a simpler format. We are still including our regular columnists and features and you'll be able to locate them by going to each issue or checking the list on the Transfiguration-Assumption Vacation Issue main page. On each page at the bottom, as well as the scroll bar at the top, you'll be able to navigate to whatever issue you wish. Because we'll be on vacation we are providing the links to the news sources so you'll be able to still keep up with the latest news for Catholics worldwide regarding Catholic issues and events. The same applies to our DEFEND LIFE section which is incorporated into each issue with a countdown to the presidential election in November to remind all how vital it is that we muster the forces of life and hold high the standard and banner of truth and honor for the Sanctity of Life in evangelizing the moral truths for this upcoming campaign, hoping and praying we can convince pro-aborts and those undecideds to realize the error of their ways and return to the good graces of God's Love by voting for those men and women who will uphold the Sanctity of Life!
Michael Cain, editor
While in the past we published five issues a week, during this vacation time we are publishing seven editions a week, including weekends in order to feature the special feasts that fall on the weekends. Therefore, over the next twelve days from August 4th through August 15th you will get twelve different issues highlighting and celebrating the special feasts in August. From the Feast of the great Cure d'Ars Saint John Vianney today to the Feast of the Transfiguration of the Lord this Sunday and the Feast of the Dedication of Saint Mary Majors Basilica in Rome next Saturday, August is indeed the month of saints with 22 out of 31 days devoted liturgically to special feast days including such holy illuminaries as Saint Dominic, Saint Lawrence, Saint Clare and Saint Maximilian Kolbe during the next twelve days. It all leads up to the apex of the month - the Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary into Heaven.
And so we will take our vacation through the Assumption, returning with a new issue on Wednesday, August 16th.
Since we took our special pilgrimage in May, we're not going to travel anywhere outside of the county of San Diego. When you live in this earthly paradise year round, why go anywhere else!?! Though the heat here during this past week has been reminiscent of Rome's summer weather, we still can't think of any place else to vacation. So we're going to stay close to the home hearth, or air conditioner as the case may be, and make it special family time - prime time family time! To make it even more family in scope, we have been able to fly my dad out here from Minneapolis for a week. The whole family is excited and looking forward to it since our sons Kevin and Kellin haven't seen him for eight years. Therefore it's going to be quite a reunion. He won't recognize those two skinny little guys he remembers in 1992!
With Cyndi's parents called home, and my mom as well, grandpa is the only link the boys have to family and in this time when family is so important, when the Sanctity of Life means procreation in order to pass down from generation to generation the values and ideals that God intended, this will be a special time. Like Cyndi's gift from her faithful Catholic parents, I owe the appreciation and love of my faith to my father. While I'm writing this I'm listening to George W. Bush's acceptance speech. He just said that his dad is the most decent man he's ever known. I can say the very same thing about my dad - Lowell "Mickey" Cain!
This year he turned 83 on the Feast of the Epiphany in age; in spirit, heart and vitality he's really going on 39! He realizes what a precious gift life and our Faith are for he came to Our Lord as a convert. Five months after he was born in Cass Lake, Minnesota on January 6, 1917 to a Lutheran family of Irish and Norwegian descent, the Blessed Mother of God appeared to three children of his generation half-way around the world in Portugal. As he would learn after his conversion in 1939, this event called Fatima would have a great impact on him. He came to cherish Our Lady and devotion to her and her Divine Son Jesus. He taught us to become involved in the Church, he lived what he preached, urging us to go to Mass as often as possible, concerned that we get to Confession and instilling in us a healthy conscience that could decipher right from wrong. He taught us the value of grace and the consequence of sin. He didn't yell or shout, he didn't order, he led by example and calm. He was Saint Joseph to his son. Throughout his life he has been an exemplary model of Christian love, following Christ's command to love one another and turn the other cheek. At times he could have been considered a modern Job with the trials he underwent. But always he came through them with his faith stronger than ever. Throughout his life he has been a good and faithful son to God the Father and a loving father who gave my sister, brothers and I room to grow and make our own mistakes, but never abandoned us. It pains him deeply to see the state of moral depravity today, but he realizes God will separate the wheat from the chaff ultimately and he's in it for the long haul. He's after George Burn's record and he just might do it!
It's appropriate he's coming at this time of the year for the Assumption is special to both the father and the son. It was the Church of the Assumption in Richfield, Minnesota where this editor's life was molded and blossomed in many ways as I learned my faith and life from my parents, the dedicated Sisters of Saint Joseph of Carondolet and the priests of the parish - the Oblates of Mary Immaculate. I fostered a vocation to the seminary while at Assumption and it was there that I first met Father Al Svobodny, OMI who 44 years later is still going strong and remains our dear, wonderful and inspired spiritual director, guiding our apostolate and our family in all things. My dad loved the Oblates when we were at Assumption. He loved Our Lady then and loves her more today just as he loves her Divine Son even more dearly today. As I said earlier, he led by example, getting fully involved in his Church as head of the Holy Name Society and an active Knight of Columbus in the fifties. A half decade later he is still very active in the KC's.
I can remember in those days at Assumption of dreaming that someday I could wear the chapeau and cape, and hold the sword proudly as my dad did and march with him. Those boyhood dreams will become reality next weekend. Yes, Sunday, August 13th is going to be very, very special for on that day, the Diocese will celebrate the Assumption with a special Rosary procession of all the parishes of San Diego at University of San Diego Stadium. There, as a Fourth Degree member of the Honor Guard, I will proudly take my place next to my role model, the man responsible for my existence and I know the tears will flow from both of us. But it's the reason we are marching that will make it even more special for we are doing it to honor a special Lady and her guidance in bringing us both so far in Faith and grace.
His grandson Kevin will turn 18 this November and Kellin will follow suit in three years. It is my fondest hope that someday three generations of Cains can march together in giving honor to God in the service of His Church. They say behind every great man is a great woman and we know this is true in looking at who always stands with Jesus - His Blessed Mother. The same holds true for dad. My mom was the one responsible for bringing him into the Church before World War II. She is gone now. Through the grace of God I was able to help usher into eternal life the one who brought me into this life by bringing mom Holy Communion in the hospital just before she went into a coma she never recovered from. Today Dad has a loyal, loving Irish Catholic wife - our stepmom Katie, who has stood with him through thick and thin, the epitome of what a wife should be. They love each other dearly. So also I have been blessed with a tremendously strong, loving wife to support me in all things - my loving bride Cyndi, who is my all and whom I love more each day because of the strong values my dad planted and the openness to the graces Jesus and His Blessed Mother have abundantly bestowed on us. I pray that our sons will find the same type of wonderful women my dad and I have been blessed with and I know, God willing, they will gravitate that way once the teen angst passes and they realize how little they really know about life. When that time arrives, just as my dad was, I resolve to be there for them; not to say "I told you so," but to gently and calmly guide them and share with them - the laughter and the tears. That is what fatherhood is all about. I know because my dad taught me.
Many write such a tribute to a father after he has passed on to his Heavenly reward, an obituary, if you will. But since he'll most probably outlive me even, why not do it now so he can read it and realize how much he is appreciated and loved. That's what family is all about! So if you try to reach us during the next week or so either by e-mail or phone, be patient, I won't be doing too much correspondence. The reason is simple: Time and family are so precious. Thus, three generations of the Cains are coming together once again after eight-years. We're now officially on vacation - making up for lost time with a great role model: my dad!
For past editorials for the last two years, click on CATHOLIC PewPOINT Archives