The Catholic Defender: The Importance of being Dad and Teacher
One day as I was working in the TMC 4 at Ft. Campbell, a young man came into the waiting area looking for me. I was in the pharmacy pulling medication for a patient when I hear this challenge.
I did not know this man, yet he came in from no where looking for me. He wanted to challenge me on Mary. Unfortunately, this was happening right in the middle of sick call so I had a whole room full of patients. Some thought I brought him in for entertainment but that was definitely not the case.
I asked him if he could wait a few minutes, and I would take him to his car and with his bible, show him that Mary was his Mother! He was anxious about that and so, when I had the opportunity, I took him out to his car and used his bible and 119 showed him that Mary was his Mother (Rev 12:17).
I patched that point along with the crucifixion scene in the Gospel of John. I then went to Genesis 3:15 and back to Rev 12. I then went to Luke and then Psalms 45:10. I then looked at the tradition of the Church and then some interesting miracles of Mary (Fatima, Lourdes, the Miraculous Medal.....).
After a few minutes, the young man made the decision that he was coming to Mass with me the following Sunday and we became good friends! He walked away with a different point of view!
As a family, we always prayed before our meals and I would always lead with the Sign of the Cross and end the prayer with the Sign of the Cross. I led them in prayers, songs and hymns, bible readings, and the Rosary. I always prayed over my children at night as they laid in bed. I generally would recite the Nicene Creed, the Our Father, Hail Mary, and the Glory Be. Then I would pray prayers from the heart with the concerns and issues of the time.
I ensured that they were at Mass every Sunday and Holy Day. I would routinely ask them questions about the faith. They loved it! Nathan, " How many books are there in the New Testament?" " 27 books dad!" "Joshua, What year did the Catholic Church first put the bible together?" " Dad, 393!" " What Council was it Jason?" " Um Dad, I forgot!" Nathan would take a crack at it, "Um Dad, wasn’t that the Council of Hippo?" " Correct! You got it!" I would ask them hundreds of questions about the faith because I wanted to prepare them for I knew they would be challenged with someday. I wanted to make it fun for them and I wanted them to feel a sense of accomplishment.
I enjoyed playing sports for our Battalion and Company Softball, basketball, and flag football teams. As a Rakassan, we won the Ft. Campbell Division Title three times. Two championship titles in softball and one in Football in a four-year period. Before one Division Tournament, the Rakassans were in the field. The ball team was allowed to come in from the field early in order to play the tournament. Our Sergeant Major was a big fan!