ISSUE # 67

April 2002


From Bro. Ben Consigli, Vice Provincial of the Esopus Province.

 I just wanted to pass on the news that Br. James Damian Brady '40, passed away this morning,  April 16. 

The wake and funeral mass will take place on Thursday, April  18 at Saint Richard Church in Miami. 

On Saturday, April 20, at 11:30AM, there will be a prayer service in the Chapel in Esopus followed by the burial. 


From FRANCIS X. (Barney) SHERIDAN ('55):  ‘My Cousin Vinny’ POISELLA urged me to write for the newsletter, so I will.  Personal notes: I retired from social work and now work as a hospital chaplain at Cabrini Medical Center, also interning at Beth Israel, where classmate Brother JAMES ADAMS is a full-time chaplain.  My wife Anne is about to retire from the NYC Board of Ed.  Son ROBERT, his wife CAROLE and their one-year-old LUCAS FRANCIS XAVIER live in the Bronx.  Daughter ROSEMARY is getting her Masters in England.  Writing this time, however, I want to go beyond the personal notes to write about DMORT, the World Trade Center morgue on First Avenue and 30th Street.

As a volunteer Red Cross chaplain, I have had the opportunity to meditate on the reality of the 9/11 tragedy as I do shifts at the morgue.  There are 2830 people missing/dead from 9/11.  However, there are more than 15,000 body parts at DMORT.  Every one is tested for DNA and matched against a database.  The base line information is from previous DNA testing, or testing on the missing person’s hairbrush, toothbrush and such, or from genetic testing of the missing person’s parents/children.  Further sources of identification include finger printing and dental records.  Investigation of clothing, rings, identification cards in wallets provides collateral information.  Members of service (police, firemen, and paramedics) are easier to identify due to better records.  Civilians are more difficult, and foreigners are most difficult.  It is assumed that someday there will have to be a common burial of unidentified remains.

The actual examination tables are set up in a large enclosed space half way between the FDR and First Avenue.  Remains are somewhat mummified, of a grey/brown color; they weigh about 1/3 of the person’s weight due to dehydration.  A forensic anthropologist, police property detectives, and a medical examiner function in that space.  A large number of detectives are also licensed morticians by training.  DNA samples are taken for testing here.  In other labs finger print and dental detectives do their work.  The officers are extremely professional and much admired.  Their work is very wearing.  As tough as the work is, the environment seems more sterile than the temporary morgue at ground zero or at the land fill site on Staten Island where detectives sift the WTC debris for human remains.

DMORT includes Memorial Park, a large white tent a few stories high that can be seen from the FDR Drive around 30th Street.  It stands on an asphalt field.  The loading doors of 18 refrigerated trailers stick through the walls of the tent.  Flowers and flags are the only decorations.  One trailer is empty and two trailers are used for remains from the airbus tragedy that took place in Queens in November 2001.  Of the 15 WTC trailers two are used for remains identified from members of service; they have a fairly fast release time to families and burial.  The other 13 trailers contain remains of civilians, with most parts unidentified.  They are getting close to the bottom of ground zero; there probably will not be a great number of new findings.

  At each delivery of civilian remains the chaplains say a prayer.  When the remains of members of one of the services arrive, there is a short ceremony where all police officers, correction officers, fire fighters, and others on the site line up to receive the remains.  The chaplain says a short prayer and a flag-folding ceremony takes place.  If the remains of a member of service have been identified over at the temporary morgue at ground zero, members of the home unit are notified ahead of time and are often present to meet the remains.  Part of the chaplain’s function is to be present for these folks also.  Since 9/11 there have also been volunteer Jewish ‘shomers’ (vigil keepers) on duty 24/7, praying constantly.  They are very inspiring.

What does it all mean?  Well, I hope the presence of chaplain and shomers in the midst of such evidence of terrorism and death is a continuing sign of the sacredness of the human body.  And I hope the work of many caring people results in closure of the painful journey for many families.

Sometimes it’s easier to block out 9/11 as a past historical event.  However, the truth is we have been changed.  We can’t avoid facing the horror of the tragedy.  We have to explore the mystery of the presence of God in the experience of the WTC.  Sometimes I just walk back and forth in Memorial Park and meditate/pray, as we did this summer in the cemetery in Esopus.  Tonight I went onto the roof of our building here in Manhattan and gazed at the two blue pillars of light shining into the sky from ground zero, a sign of remembrance and rebirth in the heavens.  It's like a prayer reaching up.  Father Mychel Judge, the Franciscan priest, Fire Department chaplain who died at the WTC, used to say this prayer:  "Lord, take me where you want me to go.  Let me meet the people you want me to meet.  Help me say the things you want me to say.  And then, Lord, keep me out of your way." (626 East 20th St. #9A, New York NY 10009-1515; 212-529-2257; fxsheridan@rcn.com)

From BR. HANK HAMMER ('75):  I would like to have my name and email address included on the Marists All web site.  My preferred email address is hankhammer@hotmail.com.  I am attaching a copy of Marist Evangelization Update.  If there is anything there that you want to use in Marists All, feel free to do so.  If anyone would like to be put on the email list for the Marist Evangelization newsletter, please contact me.

Marist Evangelization is the broad term we are using to describe our work with Marist schools and Marist youth.  In the schools we are looking closely at what it means to be Marist and Catholic today.  We spend quite a bit of time looking at the Marist heritage and charism and how it is shared and lived out by the men and women who minister in Marist schools.  With the kids we are trying to build an identity of what it means for a young person to be "Marist" and how she or he would live a life as a Marist Youth.  It is very exciting and energizing work.  Thanks for all the work you and your team put into Marists All.  What I do with Marist Evangelization is only possible because of the work that all of you have done before me.  I am humbled and grateful.  (10114 South Leavitt Street, Chicago IL 60643; 773-239-4116)

MARIST BROTHERS  celebrate 50 Years in KOBE  The 2001-2002 school year marks the 50th anniversary of Marist Brothers International School in Kobe, Japan.  After the 1995 earthquake we existed in temporary classrooms for some time.  In 1998 a beautiful new MBIS was opened.  Brothers Joseph Yoshida, Augustine Landry, and Ramon Bereicua make up the Marist Brothers’ presence in Kobe.  Gus and Joseph are members of the school's board, with Gus serving as its chairman.  Last August Br. Hank Hammer traveled to Kobe to present workshops to the entire faculty.  The spirit of Marist Education is alive and well in Kobe.  (Marist Evangelization Update, Dec. 2001)

EXPANDING THE BOARD   The editors of Marists All are very pleased to announce that Vincent Poisella (’57) has agreed to join the “editorial board” of the newsletter.  Vince has been quite generous in giving us his resume of Marist and editorial experience.  We would like to share it with you:   

Vincent Poisella’s Resume:

St. Helena’s High School, 1953-57:  The Wonder Years.  James Thomas, Stephen Martin, Larry Sullivan, Christopher, Stephen Damian, and the wonderful group of young monks who inspired me to want to be like them.  (Editor of Cross-Crown, co-editor of Helenian)

Tyngsboro, 1957-59:  Marist training in the French way (Pius Victor) and in the New Age (David Kammer) with not much in between.  (Ran the old letter press)
Poughkeepsie, 1959-62:  Kieran, honey wine, George Sommer and Dr. Schroeder, Aldo Tos, building Donnelly Hall with Nilus directing, the first lay students.  (Original staff of the Literary Journal; I named it The Mosaic!)
Esopus, 1962-63:  learning to cook (and teach Latin!) along with Don Nugent for 100 juniors, Denis, Edmund, Berky, Donald Richard.

Roselle Catholic, 1963-67:   Claude dying in my arms, Jack Duggan, Norbert, Mike McGonigle, Pat Gallagher, Sodality, Seton Hall for my Master’s in English.  (Advisor to the yearbook; Marist Sodality Newsletter)

Marist House, Laporte, Indiana, 1967-69:  Eric Anderberg, Pat Gallagher, John Brady.  What an experience!  Turned the town right side up or upside down, depending on perspective; Vietnam, Civil Rights, Notre Dame.  (Did the news update to the Marist World on our progress)

Transition, 1969-70:  Called to new vocation; said ‘goodbye’ to the Marists, deeply grateful for the Marist Experience then and now; married Jane Evans in the Brothers’ chapel at St. Helena’s.  Declan mopped the floor to be clean for the wedding!  (School newspaper advisor at Pequannock Township High School)

Roller Coaster Ride (with abundant blessings) 1970-99:  Three children, Mark (Notre Dame), Eric (Castleton State, Vermont), Anne (Marist College); English teacher, counselor, Guidance Director, Supervisor of Curriculum and Instruction; involvement with New Jersey Counseling Association, President ’93.  (Newsletter Editor for Local Educational Association, Newsletter Editor for the NJ Counseling Association, the NJ Association for Ethical, Religious, Spiritual Values in Counseling, Editor of Hopatcong district newsletter to residents, as well as newsletter to the staff of the district)

Skidding to a stop (more blessings) 1999-01:  Prostate cancer surgery (successful), sixtieth birthday (successful), retirement from the Hopatcong School District (successful … so far).

Redirection:  Part time counseling and teaching at two local community colleges, Sussex and Morris; volunteer work in church and community; Jane still working as a high school librarian at Hopatcong High School.  Involvement with the Marist Family Institute of Spirituality, and now beginning to assist with Marists All.

 
From DON MULCARE ('57):  Marists All features letters that share memories, tell stories, or provide news. This piece asks for advice.  I summon the corporate wisdom of the readership to help me think through an impending change in my life.  On 1 June 2003, after 34 years in a state institution, I will be out in the real world.  What will I do and where will I go?  When you wonder which state institution, you might think, "It's a prison or a mental hospital."  You would be close.  All that really matters is that I will be pensioned off and on the streets looking for an occupation.  Back in my college days I became certified as a secondary school teacher, but have never taught in high school.  Maybe it is time that I put my education and biology courses to work?

The readership of Marists All includes many present and retired secondary school educators; what advice would they offer to a newly retired person who is considering "secondary" education as a "second" career?  I have been watching freshmen come to the university from high schools and have wondered what is going on.  My plan is to reverse the trend and go from the university to the high school to see what is happening to these students.

I realize that I will have to get in shape because I will have to spend hours on my feet and will use my voice more extensively to communicate the wonders of biology.  Dealing with 14 to 18 year-olds will be a challenge. I have even investigated a local Catholic high school, shadowing the science faculty for five school days.  I went with the debate team for a competition and judged three rounds.  The students were polite and attentive to their instructors.  Although some of the faculty members seemed to be as young as the students, other faculty members were about my age, including retired public high school teachers and a biochemist, with a Ph.D. and with connections to institutions like Brown University and Providence College.  I had a chance to contact some of the readers of Marist All.  Ray seems to be enjoying himself in a Catholic high school after retiring from a public high school career.  John, as a superintendent, thought my background would be of use and perhaps in demand.  With any luck I will substitute teach in the near future to get a realistic view.  I am excited about the prospect.

Today one of my Gerontology students told me of a visit to Florida during which someone asked her, "Why would you ever leave Massachusetts for Florida?"  Another person in the same discussion said, "Stay away from Arizona.  It is so hot that the roads melt in the summer and you can only go outside in the morning or evening."  So, readers of Marists All from Florida, Arizona, Massachusetts and elsewhere, where is a great place to live and maybe teach in a high school, and where is a place that you think we should all stay away from?

I had a chance to talk with Brother Joseph Belanger at the last two Marist Family Institutes in Poughkeepsie about his trip to China as an English expert.  Fascinating.  There are missionary groups that send people all over the world.  I have spoken with a Peace Corps recruiter.  A return to a university faculty is not out of the question, but it would have to be at a new location.  I suppose Nancy and I could rent out the house.  What would we do with the cat?

I  do not believe in retirement, and am ready for a new career.  What did you do or what would you do in this situation?  If you have any answers to these questions, I would love to hear from you.  Perhaps we could get together at the Marist Family Institute of Spirituality this July 11-14 at Marist College, Poughkeepsie.  God bless. (7 Staffon Road, Fairhaven MA 02719-4214; 508-994-8605; dmulcare@umassd.edu)

VOLCANIC ERUPTION DEVASTATES MARIST SCHOOL IN GOMA, CONGO

On February 12th we e-mailed the following message to GMC people.  We include it in this issue so that those receiving paper copies may be aware of the Marist situation in Goma.

Brother Sean Sammon, S.G., has written an urgent letter to the brothers of the provinces regarding the tragedies in Goma, Congo.  We have a note from the province suggesting that we might be interested in forwarding that letter to those on the Marists All list.  Sean himself has welcomed the idea.  (We now share some of Sean's letter to us and follow that with his letter to the brothers, cut somewhat to fit!).

"I was touched by your willingness to circulate the letter among the members of Marists All, and I understand completely your policy of usually not doing so.   Blessings and love.  Sean"

OFFICE OF THE SUPERIOR GENERAL       4 February 2002

Dear Brothers,  The news coming out of Goma, Congo, on the night of January 17th, 2002, was chilling.  The damage from the volcanic eruption was extensive.  In several districts neighborhoods were devastated with the exception of an occasional house left intact.  We can be thankful that more lives were not lost.  An eruption of the volcano that occurred several years ago claimed more than 2000 lives.  This time the lava flows spared human lives but destroyed not only everything in their path, but also became the trigger for several explosions.  

The Marist Brothers College of Mwanga and the brothers’ community residence were greatly affected.  Except for eleven classrooms and two offices the loss was complete.

Brother Richard Mutumwa, the Superior of the District, was out of the area when the volcano erupted but cancelled his planned activities to rush back to Goma.  We asked him to guide those of us in the General Administration that we could be present in ways that would offer relief. Richard asked that Brother Théoneste Kalisa, a member of the General Council, be made available to assist them in the task of planning relief efforts.

The General Administration discussed three proposals developed by the District Council and finally agreed to be involved in helping our brothers raise funds necessary to support one of those proposals, a tent school to be set up quickly to help ensure that the students, at least 700 served by our Brothers, would have a chance to complete their academic year.

But brothers, I write this evening to ask your assistance in funding the Tent School Project that our brothers plan to set up.  Three rationales support establishing this project:

1.  To provide the students enrolled in the diocesan-owned but Marist-administered and staffed school with the possibility of finishing their current scholastic year.

  2.  To bring some hope into the lives of the young people affected by this natural disaster and,  thus, witness to the mercy of God and act in keeping with our charism.

  3.     To assist the local Church by continuing to be an effective apostolic presence in Goma  during a period subsequent to the volcanic eruption.  

I also agreed to work personally to organize help for the families of our brothers affected directly by this natural disaster.  Many were without a place to live.  I plan assistance from the General Administration coupled with efforts our brothers themselves will make to assist the families.              

A few additional facts that will help us understand the nature and scope of this proposed program, which involves setting up a fully functioning school that would be housed in tents.  Such structures will allow us to get to work immediately, and thus significantly limit the length of time students will be out of school as a result of the eruption.  The program will have some initial funding from an Italian based agency, but we Marists will carry the bulk of the project’s costs.  I have listed below the cost of each aspect of the program as estimated by the Council of our brothers in Congo.  The total to be provided by Marists is $170,400.

All funds for this program that have their source with the Marist Brothers will be coordinated and administered through our International Solidarity Bureau (BIS) under the direction of Brother Allen Sherry.  As has been our practice in recent years, all funds will be released in phases, providing ample time for reporting the actual usage of the monies given.

So, brothers, I ask you to consider this request for financial assistance in a prayerful way, and urge you to be as generous as you can.  We are in solidarity with our brothers in Congo in prayer already.  Helping financially will be another strong sign of our commitment to the spirit of solidarity that has grown and flourished in our Institute in recent years. 

Thank you for whatever help you may be able to provide toward the Tent School Project.  May the qualities we so cherish in Mary—courage in uncertain times, a radical openness to God’s will, and an ability to bring Jesus to our world in plain and simple ways—be evident in each of us.  Blessings and affection     Brother Sean Sammon, FMS,   Superior General

  The letter is followed by a chart of projected expenses, showing that $170,400 must come from Marist sources; that amount is mainly for the tents, desks, textbooks and other student needs.

P.S. We understand that contributions, clearly marked for Goma, may be sent to Br. Hugh Turley at 4200 West 115th Street, Chicago IL 60655; 773-881-5343; maristbr@aol.com

From BR. FRANCISCO CASTELLANOS ('51):  I am Brother Francisco, better known as "Franco" to most of the Brothers in the States.  After 15 years working in Japan, I taught at Marist High School in Chicago.  Then I went to Spain where I served in various ministries from community superior to school secretary.  Now I am at the General House in Rome, doing translation and secretarial work for the Institute.  I have been here for the last four years.  I send best wishes to all the persons who might remember me and also to all the participants in this interesting newsletter project. (Piazza M. Champagnat, 2; C.P. 10250; 00144, Rome, Italy; fjcastellanos@hotmail.com)

From JOE STRANG ('53):  As I am receiving the newsletter by e-mail, perhaps a few bucks can be saved by not sending me the paper copy.  I am beginning my fourth year at Heald College in Salinas, California.  I teach four sections of Communications, am chair of the General Education Department, and am about to become a teacher mentor.  One of my fondest memories of St. Joseph's Novitiate is sitting with Leo Richard and watching the Master of Novices, Brother Pius Victor, sit unflinchingly as a fly crawled across his face.  Leo and I could not stop laughing.  We were both asked to leave the hall.   My new e-mail address is: joe_strang@heald.edu.  (Box 857, Pacific Grove CA 93950; 831-375-8672)

THE 8th ANNUAL MARIST FAMILY INSTITUTE OF SPIRITUALITY will be held at Marist College in Poughkeepsie from Thursday evening to Sunday after lunch, July 11th to 14th, 2002.  The theme for this year's gathering is: 

Responding to the Will of God.

The cost for room and 9 meals is $350 for a double or $230 for a single.  To assure a place you must do the following before Tuesday June 11th, 2002:    

1. Send a deposit of $100 by writing a check to Larry Keogh and sending it to: LARRY KEOGH, 17125 W. 145th St., Lockport IL 60441, 815-838-1570, ldkjmk@aol.com.   

2. Inform Larry if you will  (a) Bring your own bed linens & towels, or  (b) Need to have linens supplied.  There is no difference in price if you being your own bed linen and towels.  The advantage is that yours are much, much better!

3.  Veterans suggest that you also bring hangers and soap.

For further information please contact: Pat or Gene Zirkel, Six Brancatelli, W. Islip NY 11795; 631-669-0273; genezirk@optonline.net

From JOHN SHEEHAN ('65):  Good heavens, Dave/Joe, Judy/Martha!  Doesn't anyone in your family keep the same name? It's like a Russian novel!  This is just a quick note to give you my new address.  This is not for the newsletter (Ed: Permission sought and granted).  However I have a memory or two myself!  I remember back in the mid-80s when I was struggling to learn DOS and such that I learned about Bulletin Boards.  Complicated things they were, full of codes to be kept straight and it occurred to me that it might be an idea for the monks to pursue - as a way of keeping everyone in touch.  I know I spoke to someone at Marist about it (it was long before email!).  I tried and failed to set up a test BB (the only hit on it was my own, and I got tired of answering my own queries). When AOL invented the chat room, I tried again.  In the hours that I sat around waiting for a monk or an alumnus to stumble onto the room, I only had one person "come in", and that was a man who had been a student of the monks in Chicago.  He started asking me about different teachers he had had, but - hey, I was in the other province - I recognized a few of the names and remembered one or two faces, but I was of little or no help.  However, there we were, in an AOL chat room, two faceless strangers who share a small part of their formative years, two products of a common heritage, two total strangers who had something to "chat" about for more than an hour.  Do I remember his name or who the brothers were that we spoke of?  Of course not.  That information resides in my brain next to "ten swell things you can do now that you understand the co-secant!" 

Where was I?  Oh, yes.  So, I had invented all by myself the idea of the Marist Chat Room.  I wish you could have seen it - I decorated the room with chintz and ball fringe.  I realized that I had a nice idea but no way of promoting it.  So, I abandoned it (actually I leased it out to a group trying to revive disco, so I got my investment back).  Then you, David (or whatever your name is!), sent me Issue #1 of the hand-typed, 12 point-pica, ugliest-typeface-in-the-world of Marists All.  I remember saying to myself, "This is great, but the guy has GOT to get a better typewriter!"  And what slayed me was that it never did change, except for once when you were on vacation or something and someone else typed it on a different machine.  So, here we are at Issue …, 67 is it already?  We are online, no stamps, no going to the mailbox in the rain, no having to go find a pen in the junk drawer to sign the letter.  You have invented a nearly perfect communications device of which you and Gus and all the others can be so justly proud.  Of course, I still have written only one real letter to Marists All.  Like so many of us, I just can't come up with something to say. 

Perhaps next time I'll tell you about the funny things that Gus said while driving the bus to Camp Marist, or about how Pat Collins could do a perfect imitation of John Berchmans, or the day when Fred Greifenstein chased the Mole around the ball fields of Esopus for an hour.  I might get inspired to remember the time I stole a cigarette off Berky's desk (I promise I'll quit next week, honest!), or the expression on Bob Joyce's face when I struck him out in a baseball game (we both knew I couldn't pitch).  Then I might remember the time at the Scholasticate when Brother Hugh threw us our first cocktail party (I promise I'll quit next week, honest!).  Maybe I'll even tell the lurid tale of Sean Sammon's patented method for removing stubborn peanut butter off utensils because the scullery dishwasher hated peanut butter.  Okay, I'll give you a hint: "Irish setters have long tongues."  Who knows what I might actually remember when I sit at the old keyboard and write more than just a quick thirty-second email to tell you that yes, in fact, I have changed my address, phone number and my email address, so here they are.  (Actually, it is a new keyboard as the cat peed on the old one). 

So, when you have to lament the fact that so few are writing to your fine publication, it's because it is so difficult to find the time.  I barely have time to let people know that I have a new address.  But the real reason I haven't written - this is SO personal, I hope you won't tell - is because Gus himself was my writing teacher in Esopus, and I don't want him to know that I could never remember when to start a new paragraph.  (Ed: the original was a run-on article with no paragraphing; we just had to touch it up!)  Anyhow, here is the information you asked for.  It has a hidden character embedded in it, known only to me, so if my name and address show up in a mass mailing about replacing my old worn-out windows with new, vinyl-clad windows that are easy to clean, I'll know that you gave them my information, David.  And if that happens, I'll send a virus to your old typewriter and stop you dead in your tracks.  Now, if I can just remember where I left my meds. (5A East Lake Road, New Fairfield CT 06812; 203-312-0177; bigjohn393@earthlink.net)

A STORY that touches CCHS Lawrence
 
by David Kammer

A prominent and very active resident of our retirement community of over 600 homes here in Florida died recently at age 75.  He had been president of the homeowners association, founder and president of the veterans' organization here, and later its chaplain.  Apparently he related well with the local parish and pastor of Sacred Heart.  I recognized him but did not know him or know about him.  His obituary revealed that he had gone off as an eighteen-year-old to the Battle of the Bulge, winning a Purple Heart.  Then, it said, he became a Maryknoller, serving in Tanzania for twelve years and several more years in Somalia.  He volunteered as a chaplain in the Vietnam affair where he won another Purple Heart.  And for a time he was a chaplain at West Point.  He left the active ministry, married, adopted his wife's three children, then 9, 11, and 13.  He lived and worked in Georgia in civil and human services.  In retirement here in Florida it seems that this whole story was known to some people but not to Judy and me, nor to many others.  But on an easel with family photos prominently displayed at the funeral were two large photos, one of a man in clergy suit with Roman collar and another of an Army officer in uniform.  At the Memorial Mass a Maryknoll classmate said that at an unusual level Jim embodied the motto: "For God and Country."  It turns out that Jim was from Lawrence, Massachusetts, attended CCHS with the Marist Brothers for two years, went to work when his father died, finished his diploma at Lawrence High, and went off to war in 1944!  I found out about this latter part of the story by talking with his sister at a reception after the memorial Mass.  Wish I had known him.  We would have had much to talk about.  His full name: Jim Bradley.

DECEASED  Brother Roy Mooney ('52) died Wednesday, April 3rd, at 2:30 a.m. after having been moved to hospice care just the evening before.  For some time Roy had been suffering from a cancer which eventually spread; a brain tumor developed.  In early 1999 Roy returned from Italy where he had been leading renewal sessions at Manziana for six years.  Earlier he had been provincial of the Poughkeepsie province.  On returning from Italy Roy worked in guidance at Roselle Catholic in New Jersey at first, but it was not long before he experienced symptoms of his sickness.  Brother Don Neary, provincial, in a notice to the Brothers of the provinces acknowledged the wonderful brotherly love shown to Roy by his community.  "To Vincent Damian, Raoul Molnar and Owen Ormsby -- over these past two months you have truly lived the words of Saint Marcellin in his spiritual testament: 'May it be said of the Little Brothers of Mary as of the first Christians: See how they love one another.'  On behalf of all of the Brothers, thank you for your love, care, and concern for Roy and for modeling Jesus' love for us."

From DOM CAVALLARO ('51):     On the Occasion of Roy's Passing

Recently, Andy Rooney of CBS's "60 Minutes" program, noted all the euphemisms we use for death, and as usual he got a chuckle from a few people, but his point is well made.  When I attended Marist College, Dr. Schroeder, our English prof at the time, didn't know how to deal with the death of one of the monks.  He noted the upbeat character of the brothers after the burial service and found it difficult to reconcile his understanding of such situations.  He announced that observation in class and told us that his solution in such situations lay in the fact that the sorrow needed an outlet.  He found that in our apparent cheerfulness.  When I received the notice of Roy's death, I began to remember fondly the many times Roy made us laugh at the seriousness of 'religious life.'  Yesterday's gospel, the first Sunday following Easter, was even more meaningful and brought another smile to my face as I thought of Roy.  Christ appearing to his disciples, noting their disbelief, announced to them in person, the joy of the Resurrection and the fulfillment of their 'faith.'  Naturally, we linger and reminisce.  Our hearts travel inexplicably to our throats, and our eyes fill.  Yet our joy for our brother is unbounded as he joins his family in glory! Call it what you will, but let us rejoice. (171 Winchester Road, Northfield MA 01360; 413-498-2129; foetoe@attbi.com)

From DICK BRANIGAN ('50):  Your Marist Heritage website is a tribute to all those before us who built and razed and built again. We owe a ton to those who gave so much.  Thanks for this great look into our past.  It is an archival triumph. 

I was Br. Stephen Aloysius ('50) when Brother Nilus was pouring concrete pillars for the new chapel on the Poughkeepsie grounds.  Larry Haggerty (Br. Brendan Lawrence) and I thought it would be a slick trick to climb up to the top of one of those pillars that were being filled with wet cement and drop a miraculous medal into the soup.  We did, and a few years ago during our class reunion in Poughkeepsie I revisited that pillar and did a lot of reminiscing.

Also in those earlier days John Callahan (he has since passed) and I poured an exceedingly unlevel basement floor in the gate house.  Why we were let loose on that project I'll never know. I'm sure someone more professional has redone that job.  Those years at Marist College sing to me every time I start to feel undervalued or unsure.  Wouldn't trade 'em. (1814 Fairview Street., Oskosh WI 54901-2404; 920-233-2954; branigan@uwosk.edu)

From VINCENT POISELLA ('57):     RESPONSE TO THE MARIST EXPERIENCE

Those who have left canonical status within the Marist community have responded to the Marist Experience in different ways.  The contributors to Marists All seem to ponder those years of formation with a spirit of camaraderie and fraternity.  The predominant image of those early days is positive: relationships were formed, experiences were shared.  In retrospect the memory is idyllic; good times become the best of times.  The negatives become minimized.  The connection with the Marist Family becomes a cause for pride.  Indeed, the values, the spiritual growth, and the social awareness developed in maturity are traced back to the years in Marist formation.

Yet there are others who look back and shudder.  The negatives take on a life of their own.  A bad experience, especially on departure, is exaggerated.  The very human errors made by the Marist decision-makers in those years are the wounds that are later revealed as emotional scars not allowed to heal.  Those who suffered in those formative years, who left under dire circumstances, remember those days in sadness, if not in anger.  For them there is a hesitancy to become reconnected to anyone that might stir up the memories.  These responses have in common a distortion that grows so far from the actuality of events.  Forgiveness comes hard when the images have grown so grotesquely. 

Those negative images, however, if centered in a positive frame of reference, are cured by time and prime the resurgence of interest in the Marist Family Picnic, the Marists All newsletter, the Marist Family Institute of Spirituality, involvement in the canonization of Champagnat, and the growth of Marist College. 

I contend that the cure for the sadness or anger is not unlike the process that has enlivened those who have felt so positively over the years.  Involvement engenders once again a pride and sense of belonging.  And so, those of us who fondly remember the past humbly ask the others to join together with the Marist Family today.  Reality will resurface and chase away the ogres from the past that haunt the present. (24 Brooklyn Mt. Road, Hopatcong NJ 07843; 973-398-5477; vtpoisella@yahoo.com)

Marist Heritage Project  Brian Desilets is asking for someone to help dig into the Esopus archives for biographical information regarding the Brothers buried in the Poughkeepsie cemetery.  The Marist College archivist, John Ansley, has stated that he could hire a Brother or two for a couple of weeks or so to archive this information.  They would learn a lot about making web pages.  Contact Brian at: 845-297-7499 or bdesilets2@aol.com.

 


EDITORS' NOTE:

About a year ago when we last reported on finances we had a balance of $1443.  Six issues later, after the expenses of this issue there will be a balance of $693.  That is enough for three more issues, each costing an average of $220.  While publishing the last five issues our income has been a total of $50!

Please help to support our effort to maintain close Marist ties.  Share your thoughts and your stories.  Write to:

  Gus Nolan, 50 South Randolph Avenue, Poughkeepsie NY 12601; gusnolan@aol.com

Vincent Poisella, 24 Brooklyn Mt. Road, Hopatcong NJ 07843; vtpoisella@yahoo.com

David Kammer, 476 LaPlaya, Edgewater FL 32141; kammer@mpinet.net
                              in Maine after May 30     kammer@tds.net