Tonight I hear that Fr. Thaddeus Sapio, OFM, died yesterday on the feast of the Stigmata. May he rest in peace. Fr. Thaddeus was a member of the first community of friars I ever lived in, at the former Holy Cross Friary on Soundview Ave. in the Bronx. He was to me such a good example of a friar minor: devoted to the people, plain and straightforward, and very funny.
Fr. Thaddeus was also the first confrere in community whom I ever approached to hear my confessions. I was two years baptized, and in those days I was full of convert zeal, a little bit scrupulous, and very worked up. Having such a gentle and humble confessor did a lot to help me relax and appreciate grace.
Somehow I came to have his copy of the 1992 Liturgy of the Hours Supplement. I don't remember how. Maybe I expressed anxiety about not having the proper prayers and he gave it to me. He had written his name in the front of the booklet, and I always kept and used it as a way to remember his good example. I had it for fourteen years until I gave it to a nun from the Dominican Republic who wanted the propers for Our Lady of Guadalupe and was moving to Rome the next day. I bought a new one for $2.95 at the Daughters of St. Paul, but it's not the same.
No problem, though, Fr. Thaddeus, I was only imitating you by giving away the booklet. I can keep your good example close without my third class relic.
Requiescat in pace.
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