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Category Archives: Father Dan Begin

Patting the Puppy

I bet for a lot of us, these difficult times turn our minds to Father Dan. What would he be saying and doing in the face of Covid 19? How would he cope? What would he advise us? I keep returning to a frequent Father Dan trope. He used to say he imagined a space […]

A Timely Return

This seems like a good time to resurrect the blog. Lead Me, Guide Me, a memoir about Father Dan Begin, is tentatively planned for publication in June, and the vagaries of the coronavirus won’t, we hope, get in the way. The blog serves to remind everyone that the book is coming, and it can also share Father Dan’s […]

My friend, Barbara Robinson, died Monday, August 13, at the age of 91. I printed this out and shared it at her funeral yesterday. I used to be afraid of Barbara Robinson. In fact, I’ve often thought that the expression “She doesn’t suffer fools gladly” might have been created to describe Barbara. She could pack […]

Bringing Light

On Saturday, December 22, 2007, St. Cecilia’s had already replaced our annual Toy Sale with an open house for the neighborhood. (Much to Father Dan’s satisfaction: no more plastic toys!) Friends from suburban parishes had arrived early to deliver groceries to share with our neighbors. Families from all over Mount Pleasant  gathered on that Saturday morning, […]

Suffering

One time, I asked Father Dan to explain suffering. I wanted him to tell me why it exists. Why is there such profound pain and fear, even for animals? In response, Father Dan launched into a story. He had recently been in his car on a beautiful sunny day, and there was an animal, a […]

Because He Lives

I have some tapes from Masses at St. Cecilia’s, my old church. Tonight I felt like hearing a random sermon from Father Dan. I guess you can’t say picking out an Easter Mass qualifies as random, exactly, but let’s say the choice was relatively unpremeditated. Wow. The words not only reverberate all around Father Dan and […]

Father Dan’s Funeral Sermon

When I mention that Father Dan wrote the sermon for his own funeral Mass, people are sometimes taken aback–people, that is, who didn’t know him. “Wouldn’t somebody else have liked to say something?” one of them asked me, implying that Father Dan was presumptuous or egotistical. Well, someone else did speak: his friend Father Paul […]

Moving Mountains

Because Father Dan wasn’t the formal celebrant on St. Cecilia’s last day, he couldn’t deliver the homily. That’s a rule. According to canon law, the Bishop says the last Mass and gives the homily. Father Dan was leaving his neighborhood, his life, and his job of over 30 years. He, like us, was losing his community. […]

If Nothing Ever Changed . . .

Google proved a goldmine of information for Father Dan’s homilies. On Epiphany, he would explain the Star of Bethlehem this way: the astronomical conjunction of planets in about 6 BCE lined up in Pisces, a constellation special to the Hebrews, sparking the Magi’s trip to the manger. Discussing the Good Samaritan, he’d provide a lengthy historical […]

A Funeral

I posted this essay about seven years ago, when the Diocese of Cleveland was in the process of closing St. Cecilia and Epiphany churches in the Mount Pleasant neighborhood. I don’t know why I didn’t name Father Dan Begin back then, but I still like it this way.    Today I attended a funeral mass […]