God is Good!

Seek the Lord while He may be found!

At 95


Uncle George PicSome folks are asking me about how I lived to the age of 95 and stayed 70 years in the Priesthood.  The genes parents give their children usually determine the number of years the children will live.  My parents, Irish immigrants, blessed us four children with good ones.  My sister, Catherine, died at 96, my brother, John, at 95 and Frank at 85.  Frank did much more difficult physical work than the rest of us.

Something more precious than the good genes came in the gift of the Catholic Faith our parents gave us.  My sister attended daily Mass for the last 50 years of her life.  My brother, John, studied four years for the priesthood and then left in 1932 to help support our family.  My brother, Frank, raised his five children as Catholics.  These nephews and nieces still attend Mass on weekends in 2014 out of love for God.  I mention these family matters because their good example helped me to treasure my Priesthood and my work as a Priest.

In my teen age years in the 1930’s, my plan for life sounded like this: no alcohol, drugs or smoking.  At the age of 17 I took the pledge to refrain from alcohol in any form for the rest of my life.  This solemn promise still holds in my life at 2014.  Parents, encourage your children to do this.  Alcohol never tasted is never missed.

Traveling to Europe and the Middle East gave me a deep interest in life and the different peoples of these countries.  I didn’t travel as a sightseer, but as a pilgrim on pilgrimage to holy places.  In my 20 visits to Paris, France and its environs, its shrines to many saints richly strengthened my Catholic faith.  France’s saints became more real to me: St. Vincent DePaul, St. Catherine Laboure (The Miraculous Medal), St. Therese (The Little Flower), St. Mary Margaret Mary (The Messenger of the Sacred Heart), St. Bernadette of Lourdes (15 times I visited Lourdes), St. John Vianney (Cure of Ars).

In Italy, my travels took me to the shrine of St. John Bosco, St. Francis and St. Clare, both of Assisi, St. Pius X, and St. Padre Pio.  I offered Mass at the tombs of all the above Saints, except for St. Bernadette of Lourdes.  These experiences made me fall in love with my Priesthood and my Catholic Faith.  My work as a Priest gave me much joy and sense of fulfillment and much help to my good health.

My 27 pilgrimages to the Old City of Jerusalem and its environs, Galilee, were carried out with one purpose in mind: to drink in the Spirit of Christ as much as possible.  While I was in Calcutta, India, Mother Theresa and her Sisters taught me to see the Face of Christ in everyone.  During my times as a missionary in Alaska, the Eskimos showed themselves to be a long suffering and gentle people, living in darkness and stormy weather most of the year.

In my adult life, my weight stayed the same at 150 pounds, a help to good health.  After 75 years as a golfer, my legs enable me to walk with a walker on all occasions.  Open heart surgery at the age of 82 in 2001, gave me a new lease on life.  In 23 years, up to the age of 91, as Chaplain at Chicago Midway Airport, I met travelers from across the USA and the world at large.  These were the happiest years of my life.

Finally, my Blog has occupied my mind during the last 3 years, up until now, 2014.  The blog, with its weekly messages has been touched in 116 countries and viewed over 19,300 times.  Amen!

Fr. George Mc Kenna

September 6, 2014 - Posted by | Bulletins | , , ,

10 Comments »

  1. Dearest Father George . . . You never looked or souinded finer!  How proud we all are to know you and love you . . . . .  and to try to imitate you . . . forwarding this God Is God to family and friends,

    Gratitude galore to  you for being our friend and brother,   mary lou lux wingert

    Comment by fathermkenna | September 6, 2014 | Reply

  2. Dear Fr. George,
    Marianne, Elaine, and I would like to come out and visit sometime. Maybe even my brother Paul.

    Ed (Bud) Weston

    Comment by Ed Weston | September 6, 2014 | Reply

  3. Dear Father George, while at Midway with ATA, you brought me much closer to the church. My wife, of 41 years, and I attend Mass every week. Thank You so much.

    Comment by Mike Derrick | September 6, 2014 | Reply

  4. Dear Father George,

    We read your weekly blog to our three children. You are in our prayers nightly and we are inspired by your Godly message. Your life is an inspiration!

    Ed and Lisa McNally

    Comment by Anonymous | September 6, 2014 | Reply

  5. Your words are a blessing, Father. Thank you for sharing. It is truly Gods work you were entrusted with, countless lives have been changed because of it, I am happy mine is one of them. Fondly – Jamie

    Comment by Jamie Doll | September 6, 2014 | Reply

  6. I look forward to reading your messages whenever they appear.I remember you fondly from my years, and yours, at Maryville. in Des Plaines. Thank you for your guidance in those early years. Stay well and vibrant. With love and prayers and thanksgiving for you and all you’ve done. Pat (Halla) Weidinger class of 1950.

    Comment by Patricia A. Weidinger | September 7, 2014 | Reply

  7. Beautiful, thanks Uncle George

    Comment by Anonymous | September 8, 2014 | Reply

  8. Dear Fr. McKenna,
    This message is a beautiful testimony to God for the gift of your priesthood. Thank you for answering God’s call to become a priest and for all of the thousands of souls you have blessed and/or helped to save for the kingdom of God. You are a great witness and definitely have walked in “Persona Christi” all the years of your priesthood and I believe God will prepare a very special place for you in heaven one day. May God continue to richly bless you, JoAnn V.

    Comment by JoAnn V. | September 8, 2014 | Reply

  9. Hi Fr. George! Thank you for another wonderful post! What a great look back at your interesting and long life! Think of all of the people that you have touched along the way. You had a great self-discipline that many wish they had! And all of the wonderful travel, it certainly broadens a person’s perspective to go and see how others live. For you to see all of those beautiful historic cathedrals and churches in Europe – I’m sure that it deepened your faith greatly. God blessed you and in doing so, he blessed the many that you have guided, influenced, and prayed for during your long life! Praying for you daily, my dear friend! You are a such a great priest and person! I feel blessed having met you! Love, Nancy

    Comment by nancywest22 | September 9, 2014 | Reply

  10. Dear Father McKenna,

    I am so thankful for your post and look forward to reading it every time it comes. You are such a faithful servant of our wonderful Lord and your contribution is needed. Please continue to offer us your wisdom and positive support. Times are difficult and people need the Lord. Everyone is discouraged and find it hard to look for hope in a secular world. I, too am very interested in Divine Mercy and all of the messages given to our St. Faustina. Thank you for being a supporter and advocate. Many clergy are not. It is hard to understand. You are very lucky to have traveled to visit so many holy places that many of us can only “imagine”. What a blessing! Thank you again. I will be watching and reading. Susan Chandler

    Comment by susanmark@peoplescom.net | September 10, 2014 | Reply


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: