Father Peter Smith’s little fundraiser for child cancer patients touches my heart for three reasons.
First, even though I haven’t seen them in 31 years, Father Peter, Terri, Kevin, and Kerin were among my family’s most beloved friends at St. Vladimir’s Seminary.
Second, his “Fadapita” handle comes from the fact that that’s how my son Aaron pronounced his name when he was five and six years old. Aaron and Father Peter adored each other.
Third, I recently volunteered for a period of several months in the oncology ward at Sick Kids Hospital in Toronto. I’m ashamed to admit that I had to quit because I could no longer take the emotional toll that it had on me every week.
Imagine a hospital floor where every kid from birth to 16 is bald from chemo or radiation.
Imagine parents showing you their phone when their child looks the other way, and saying to you, “This is what he/she looked like with hair.”
Imagine showing up for your shift and learning that three of your kids have died since you were there last week.
Imagine a dozen family members standing outside a child’s hospital room crying disconsolately. You know there’s a dead or dying child on the other side of the door.
Somehow I managed to stay calm and even cheerful during my shift; but then, I would come home and cry the rest of the afternoon and evening.
Father Peter is only trying to raise $500. Please share this post widely. We can do this in a matter of hours.
With love in Christ,
Giacomo Sanfilippo, Editor
Happy Name Day, Father Peter! God grant you many, many years!