Fr. Steve’s updates

Today was our end of the year retreat for our graduating 8th graders.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Today was our end of the year retreat for our graduating 8th graders.

Parts of the day recalled memories of the year and asked the students to share some of their highs and lows. Other parts of the day were meant to help them think about high school and beyond, while helping identify their hopes and fears. Other events were meant to help them pray and celebrate being together.

Staff were invited to write a few words of advice or congratulations to any of the students in a letter. We took a half hour of quiet to let the students read through the notes. I noticed quite a few tears of gratitude, nostalgia and laughter. Many of these young people I’ve known since they were third graders, and they’ve grown up right in front of my eyes. I have vivid memories of so many of them.

I said a few words of goodbye since I won’t be at graduation. Graduation is a big event for our youngsters, and I’ll miss being a part of it all. But, I plan to be back strong in the fall and be what support I can through their high school years.

Our current crop of high school students finished their semester at the public school today. As I walked around campus, I noticed many of their families had arrived and were loading up their cars with clothes and memorabilia from another year completed. We’ll see a good number of them back in another week to start summer school or work experiences.

Lakota youth reading letters at St. Joseph's retreat

Lakota youth reading letters at St. Joseph's retreat

Fr. Steve’s updates

Today was my last cycle of chemotherapy. I continue to get so much support from many different folks and thoroughly enjoyed our visit. I’m calling it an early night tonight, hoping to sleep off some of the chemo effects.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Today was my last cycle of chemotherapy.

I spent the whole morning in the chair, reading for a while, then dozing off part of the time. When we were all finished, the nurse gave me a pin with the words “Celebrate Life” written around the circle to mark my “graduation”.

I probably won’t feel like celebrating too much for the next couple of days because the chemo wears me out more than the radiation. But, I know it’s another step closer to health and wholeness, and I do feel good about that.

As I left, I told the nurses they were wonderful people, but I hoped I didn’t have to come back and see them as a client again, just for a visit.

I had another visitor, Fr. George, a Jesuit priest from South Dakota. I filled him in on the sarcoma, then we shifted gears and talked about work, church, religious life and baseball. I welcomed the stimulating conversation as it took my mind off of everything medical for a while. We had supper and I was even able to eat some small portions without any troubles.

I continue to get so much support from many different folks and thoroughly enjoyed our visit. I’m calling it an early night tonight, hoping to sleep off some of the chemo effects.