Thursday, 10 June 2010

Year for Priests: a testimony

During our visit to Normandy, we came across the story of Fr Joe Lacy, who landed on the beaches as chaplain to an American Ranger unit. President Bush referred to him when he visited the American cemetary at Omaha Beach in 2002:

Only a man who is there, charging out of a landing craft, can know what it was like. For the entire liberating force, there was only the ground in front of them -- no shelter, no possibility of retreat. They were part of the largest amphibious landing in history, and perhaps the only great battle in which the wounded were carried forward. Survivors remember the sight of a Catholic chaplain, Father Joe Lacey, lifting dying men out of the water, and comforting and praying with them. Private Jimmy Hall was seen carrying the body of his brother, Johnny, saying, "He can't, he can't be dead. I promised Mother I'd look after him."

Fr Lacy's story is a wonderful testimony to priestly mission and identity.

I was reminded of Fr Joe's story by this post at Wheat and Weeds.

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