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Small Things Count

In my 69 years as a priest, I discovered the value of little acts of kindness.  On May 29th we celebrated the Mass of Resurrection for Fr. Stanley Rudcki, a Chicago Priest; he was 87.  We had never met, but one Saturday night at his Mass he showed me a small kindness.  In his homily, he encouraged the people to purchase my book, “Wisdom From The Pulpit”.  To my knowledge, no other priest had ever done this.  Though I could not attend his funeral, I have offered my prayers for the repose of his soul, and thanked him for thinking of me.

The Prayer Garden at the  Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist,  Milwaukee, Wisconsin

The Prayer Garden at the
Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist,
Milwaukee, Wisconsin

The North American College in Rome serves as a seminary for United States students.  Chicago sends two of its brightest students there every year.  Needless to say, this was never a privilege of mine.  One day, while in Rome, I heard the Rector give a talk on Joy to the Seminarians in the chapel.  He told a story about an old man dying in despair in a nursing home in St. Louis, Mo.  No one ever came to visit him.A young doctor began passing by his bed.  Every day he would stop for a moment to twist the old man’s toe.  Not a word was spoken.  The man died in peace.  I never forgot that story.

Recall little thoughtful things done for us.  Someone went out of their way, beyond the call of duty to help us – a word or a gesture.  We were most appreciative.

In the VI Station of the Cross, lives a woman, Veronica by name.  One day she heard noises outside.  Jesus was passing by, carrying His heavy cross.  She didn’t know the Man, but His bloody and dirty face tormented her heart.  In a half moment, she wiped His face with her towel.  Jesus rewarded her by leaving His Image on her towel.

Each day everyone we meet, without exceptions, is carrying a cross, painful, despairing spirit, broken heart, harmful addictions.  Any little act of kindness on our part will help to bring a spirit of hope into that person’s life.

                        Fr. George Mc Kenna

July 7, 2013 - Posted by | Bulletins | , , , , ,


  1. Thank you Fr. McKenna for this beautiful reflection. Life goes by much too quickly—thank you for reminding me to show my neighbors an act of kindness. God bless you and keep you in His loving care. Pam Gervais

    Comment by Anonymous | July 7, 2013 | Reply

  2. Joy-filled wisdom…that touched the hearts of those in the stories you have shared…and touch the hearts of all reading…Small Things Count… always will! Thanks so much Fr. George!
    God’s Blessings, Love & Grace, Marianne

    Comment by mcs | July 7, 2013 | Reply

  3. I was given your lovely book “Wisdom From the Pulpit” a couple of months ago at a Rosary Cenacle. I read the chapter clled “The Risen Christ- The Encourager.” How well it fits with this entry in your Blog!

    Since I have been reading your book I have been trying to be kinder, more prayerful, more in love with Our Blessed Mother…thank you Fr George!

    Your changing my thoughts to more positive ways to think, followed with positive acts, has helped me remain calm and helpful and to be of use and service to my little village as we endured the catastrophic fire here that claimed 19 young firefighters and begin to rebuild our burned up town.

    And Happy 94th Birthday! Sorry to tell you so late at night but it is still only 9 here near Prescott, Arizona. Still your birthday tbere I think! So Happy Birthday! And thank you for changing my life with your cheerful and positive stories! May God Bless you with many happy returns! 🙂 Julie Rogers. Peeples Valley, AZ.

    Comment by Anonymous | July 12, 2013 | Reply

  4. Another beautiful story! I am so blessed to have met you and to have read your book. And my mother, God rest her soul, enjoyed your stories very much. I would read them to her over the phone and ask her if she’d like to hear another ‘Fr. George story’. She always said yes. Sometimes we’d be on the phone for an hour! A bright part of her day in the nursing home. You are a gift and a treasure to all who know you! Love you, Fr. George.

    Comment by Nancy Westvang | July 13, 2013 | Reply

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