To my son Tommy,
There was an old joke about smart phones and tablets. It seemed that no matter what you wanted to do in life, there's an app for that. Need to track calories, there's an app for that. Need to count steps, there's an app for that. Need to learn how to potty train a snail, probably an app for that too.
Well something similar could be said about the Catholic religion, there's a Saint for that. Need to find something lost, there's a Saint for that. Find yourself losing patience, there's a Saint for that. Find out your father/grandfather/husband/brother (or whatever your Grandpa Leo is to all these people who love him) has an aggressive form of brain cancer, there's a Saint for that too.
O great St. Peregrine, you have been called "The Mighty," "The Wonder-Worker," because of the numerous miracles which you have obtained from God for those who have had recourse to you.I wish I could tell you more specifics at this time, but a scheduling snafu had me leave your Grandpa Leo before he went in to see his surgeon. The surgeon had got called back into the operating room and was about two hours late. I thought to myself, if you are going to be late, saving a life or lives in surgery sure is a good excuse. Anyways, I was worried about time and worried about picking you up from school so your grandpa said for me to go. By the time I got the parking (pre)paid and was almost out of the garage, your mom called and said she will make sure you are picked up and to go back with your Grandpa Leo. By the time I got back to your grandpa, the visit was over and he was headed towards the subway in the hospital to make it easier for me to pick him up and get him home. Well, the good thing was I could drive him home and we stopped by to see you let out of school. The bad news is your Grandpa Leo isn't the best at getting all the details told to him, so we got half the story at best. All I got was that it was an aggressive form of cancer (no name) that is specific to the brain (which means it didn't come from somewhere else in the body) and that they were going to go "full court press" on dealing with it, and that he can drive, and, according to the surgeon, when he speaks to the oncologist and they give them a bunch of statistics and numbers and time frames to remember they are never right. I got about twenty questions still unanswered, even some that are beneficial to your grandpa, such as; can he drink? can he stop taking the anti-seizure pill that makes him feel loopy? what about lifting more than ten pounds? etc. Your Grandpa Leo just shrugged and said that those answers would have been good to know. But tomorrow the brain oncologist will be calling and scheduling some appointments for him, so more info to come.
For so many years you bore in your own flesh this cancerous disease that destroys the very fibre of our being, and who had recourse to the source of all grace when the power of man could do no more. You were favoured with the vision of Jesus coming down from His Cross to heal your affliction. Ask of God and Our Lady, the cure of the sick whom we entrust to you. Especially Leo Thomas Downey III and all who invoke your aid.
Aided in this way by your powerful intercession, we shall sing to God, now and for all eternity, a song of gratitude for His great goodness and mercy.
Sincerely with love from your dad,