Monday, April 27, 2009

New Friends from Down Under

Among the many remarkable people I met at the Eucharistic Convention were two Australians, Fr. John Flader and Sr. Trish Franklin. Sometimes moments of grace come to us in the form of consecrated persons, whose witness cannot help but move the soul. One evening our generous hosts took us all out to a lovely Japanese restaurant in Takapuna. I was blessed to have a fascinating conversation with Fr. Flader, who is actually an American and a Harvard graduate, now Director of the Catholic Adult Education Centre of the Archdiocese of Sydney, Australia. Father is also a member of Opus Dei and he knew Saint Josemaría Escrivá. Like his spiritual mentor, Fr. Flader gives clear instruction in matters of faith and morals while witnessing to the truth and beauty of the Catholic teaching.

Sr. Trish is a dynamo who works with the poorest of the poor in Vietnam. I had a long talk with her about many things, and her insights into the problems of life are both wise and shrewd. She takes care of many impoverished and incapacitated children, who suffer from blindness and other ills. As she is quoted on the Convention website: "I don't think I could do this work without my faith, without turning to God every day in prayer. I don't think I'd have any resources if I didn't have faith and prayer." The Loreto-Vietnam Australia Project does phenomenal work, if anyone is looking for a charity in which their donation would go directly to the poorest. Share

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