Last Things for December 2013

Father Scott Carroll: A Priest Forever

Toledo Bishop Leonard P. Blair told the Catholic Chronicle, the Toledo diocesan newspaper, that watching Father Scott Carroll during his priestly ordination on May 8, 2013, was like watching Christ suffer on the cross. Father Carroll was in the final stages of cancer.

“Being a priest meant everything to him,” Father Keith Stripe, pastor of Father Carroll’s home parish, St. Joseph’s, said. “His dream was to be ordained a priest.”

To make that dream come true, Bishop Blair advanced the date of ordination twice as the illness was progressing. Father Carroll died on May 10 — as a priest forever.

Missouri ‘Mystery Priest’ Aids Young Motorist

The media called him the “mystery priest,” but Father Patrick Dowling, of the Diocese of Jefferson City, ordained in 1982, said he was just being a priest.

Traveling from one Sunday Mass assignment to another on Aug. 4, 2013, he came upon the scene of an accident. A young woman was trapped inside a mangled car. Father Dowling stopped, prayed with her, gave her absolution, and anointed her.

Additional rescue personnel came, and Father Dowling stood nearby praying his rosary. Freed, the woman was taken to a hospital. He left. No one knew who he was until local media finally discovered his identity.

The Poinsettia

A legend says a little boy wanted to lay a gift before the image of the infant Jesus in his church, but he had nothing. He cried himself to sleep. He awoke to find beside him a plant with dazzling red leaves. It reminded him of the Star of Bethlehem and was his gift.

Fifty Years Ago

In December 1963, Dale Francis, later editor of Our Sunday Visitor, a Protestant minister who converted to Catholicism, wrote that most converts convert to the Catholic Church to feel closer to God. A pastor said in an article that visiting the homebound in his parish was a priority. Another article exegeted the New Testament story of Martha and Mary.

‘Go in Peace’

“Forever I will sing the goodness of God.” — Psalm 89:2