Thursday, May 24, 2012

Tom Remus

When I was young, Tom was a regular member of the gang that played softball and touch football in the Bennett School-ground. He was also a member of the "Weldon Market" hardball team that played in the Downriver League. This was the first uniformed team on which I played. We did very well and took the championship for the one year we played in it. When we graduated to the "American Legion League" he played second base, I played first base. Our sponsor was Stark-Hickey Ford and we never won much.

Tom went to Western High School and I went to Ford Trade. We would meet each other from time-to-time and we both considered ourselves as part of the gang. When I got out of the Navy the first time I hung around with Tom for awhile. We both went to Fleetwood Cadillac for a job and we were hired. I was put on the second shift, he got the first shift and we drifted apart.

When he left Fleetwood he became a policeman with the Detroit Police. When I saw him he would tell me about his exploits on the force. Exploits that always, to me, seemed far fetched and I felt that he was exaggerating. He told me about a time when some cops beat up some black guys that were in a cell. I took that with a grain of salt.

Tom had two sisters: Virginia and Cookie. Rita and Virginia Remus, at one time, were very close friends. Tom's family did not go to church and I never learned to which denonitation they belonged. The Remus home was on Navy, across the street and about three houses from Lawndale. Tom's father worked as a clerk at Timken Roller Bearing and his Mother was a homemaker. Tom's father wanted him to become a CPA and Tom always said that was what he wanted to do.

Over the years, through our move to Miami, I lost track of Tom. About two years ago, while is Green Cove Springs, I received a phone call from him, he wanted to chat. He told me about his becoming a Detroit Chief Of Police and what it was like to serve under the first black mayor, Coleman Young. All the police chiefs were white and Coleman put pressure on them to resign so that he could appoint black chiefs. Tom would not resign and Coleman treated him badly. Even had him transferred to the East side to try to force his resignation. Tom moved to the East side and found he liked it there. Eventually Coleman stopped the harassment and learned to live with Tom.

Tom told me he had called to specifically tell me about his conversion to Catholicism. He said he always looked at the Beauregard family as the ideal church going family. He saw that we all seemed happy and enjoyed everything. Through his respect for the Beauregard's he became a Catholic and so did his Mother. He married a Catholic girl and they had five children. He said he owed it all to the Beauregard family example. It was all so surprising to hear that I failed to get any specifics. After that the conversation ended and he said goodbye.

About ten months ago I learned that Tom had died. I have tried to piece this all together, I believe Tom knew he was about to die and wanted to relate some aspects of his life to me. I pray for him now.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

To Support Or Not To Support

I have received five letters from Mitt Romney asking for financial support. I have sent money to Rubio, Cain, Palin, The Tea Party and Santorum because I want smaller government, a government that is responsive to the people and one that respects the Constitution. The big spenders: you know who they are, the ones that have increased our national debt to 17 trillion and do not blink at even more increases, the ones that have set themselves aside as better that the people and have created laws to which they are immune, they must be defeated. We need candidates all over this Country who will do the right thing and get this country back on the right path.

Recently we have seen entrenched Republicans get defeated in the primaries, hoo-ray and good riddance to those grafters. Palin through out a slew of them in Alaska and those Republican elites have not forgotten that defeat and made her suffer. When the electorate throw them out is almost impossible for the Republican elites to get back at them, (except to join their democrat friends.)

What is Romney? His father was a capitalist, he is a capitalist and has had many successes as one. He is not afraid to get rid of non-producers and indeed his success may have been entirely because of that. However, he presided over the installation of universal health care in Mass. and worked hand in glove with liberals to put that State in serious debt for the next 30 years, or more. Liberals believe that government can solve all the people's problems and here is Romney siding with them. I do not believe that a republican should compromise with liberals. When that is done the liberals always win out over a republican. Even Regan got hornswaggled by Tip O'Neil who promised to reduce government spending if Regan would support him on some of his agenda. Tip O'Neil never kept that promise.

After Obama is defeated I do not want a business-as-usual bunch of elites doing the same things to this country as they are now doing. I want roll-back and it concerns me that Romney may not be the man to do it.

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Gregory Beauregard

Upon receiving the notice of your High School graduation my thoughts returned to the only time that we had met and what a favorable impression you had made upon me. You may not remember, but I do. In your innocence you accepted me completely, offered me some exotic drinks you had mixed from your chemistry set (which I drank), took me upstairs to your game room and shared your knowledge of a Mario Brothers game. I recollect how you made one bird lay explosive eggs and showed me it's significance. It was all very charming.

And now, you are graduating. I am impelled to offer you some information to you that you may not know, something that I may be uniquely qualified as your great uncle to do. It is important that you know who you are, where you came from in recent history. You are a direct descendant of Andre Beauregard who, as a French soldier, came to North America to protect French settlements and fight against the Indians. He came here in 1590 and did such a good service for the settlers he was rewarded with three islands in the St. Lawrence River. The Beauregard's have always been Catholics and the ones I have known: from your great, great grandfather, Leon; to your great grandfather, Azarias; to your grandfather, John; all have been practicing Catholics. All have been hard workers and worked all their lives, that is, found something physical to do even in old age.They were also a credit to their communities.

In any endeavor you have plan for longevity because you have enduring genes. Leon and Azarias died in their nineties and I am sure John will exceed both of them. An innate intelligence with a sense of humor come with these genes and will give spice to your life. From a spiritual side I want to remind you that you are here to work out your salvation. Be aware that just as the physical side needs nourishment the spiritual side needs care and attention. Listen to the spirit inside of you, pray always to do the right thing.


Monday, May 07, 2012

Fallen Away Catholics

There is a push being made in our Church to appeal to fallen away Catholics to return. There are various reasons for people to fall away and some are legitimate. The scandal involving priests and young boys is an example. The change in litergy is another. When these things happen it is natural to feel disaffected. It is also natural to feel the loss of religiosity in ones life. Once fallen away, does that mean there can never be a reconciliation? How does one return if they want to? Our parish priests are asking for an opportunity to talk to those that may want to return.

I was surprised to learn that our Paster was once a fallen away Catholic. Perhaps that is why he feels that there is more that can be done for them and a reaching hand toward them can be a healing. As we all know, there is no sin that cannot be forgiven, by individuals or by institutions. A harboring resentment is detrimental to ones health and serenity. If there is an unfilled need in ones life it is well to think about how to achieve that need and take the steps get internal peace.

The Pastor, at his own expense, bought over 1,000 books "Rediscover Catholicism" by Matthew Kelly for distribution to parishioners. This book covers some important issues of our time, such as: Are you happy? Are you living an authentic life? How would you like your life to change? Is Jesus still relevant? Why have so many people rejected Catholicism? Do you really think you will find happiness where you are looking?

This is a book for intelligent, thinking people that have been hurt in life and are trying to make sense of it all. I found it helpful, chalenging, difficult, and rewarding. I am pleased that our priests are behind this.