Friday, 19 January 2018

The Enduring Legacy of Now-‘Venerable’ Father Patrick Peyton (Part 2)

Jan 20-21  2018 :  3rd Sunday in Ordinary Time

Joseph Pronechen:  JAN. 4, 2018

A Peyton-Inspired Example
When Michael and Margaret Dwyer were married, both were high-powered political workers. She worked for the governor of Massachusetts. In the first five years of their marriage, they had to deal with the deaths of five immediate family members while at the same time  raising the start of their family of four children, now ages 10 to 19. 
Margaret had a strong Catholic foundation from child-hood, but said it wasn’t defining their life in those early married years. 
“Then someone witnessed to me about the Rosary and gave me a card from the ministry, the result of Father Peyton’s life work,” she said. With both of her parents in hospice care and the children in school, she committed to the Marian prayer with Michael.
“We both prayed the Rosary in the car when commuting to work and at night together after the children were in bed during those emotional roller-coaster times,” she  explained.
Margaret has found “the Rosary has a profound way [of connecting her to prayer] when meditating on the Gospel and Jesus and Mary. You take it to heart.”
Soon, the parents witnessed to the children about praying the Rosary. The family made their own large papier-mâché rosary and pray the Sorrowful Mysteries every Good Friday.
When work brought the family to Easton, Massachusetts, Margaret found herself at Holy Cross Family Ministries’ daily Mass. Her connection to “The Rosary Priest”   remains a blessed one.
Margaret recounted how Father Peyton was not initially accepted into a seminary, but in God’s time “ended up preaching to 28 million people,” leading her to observe that ordinary people are called to do extraordinary things. “We’re all called to make an extraordinary expression on those [things] God puts in our pathways.”

The Next Steps
Now that Father Peyton has been named “Venerable,” Father Marcham is working on the next step toward    beatification: The Congregation for the Causes of Saints needs to approve a possible medical miracle or healing through Father Peyton’s intercession.

“At this point, it can be a miracle already reported that’s been examined and documented,” said Father Raymond. While full details cannot be released at the moment, one possible medical miracle occurred in 2005 in Africa; that case has been sent to the Congregation for the Causes of Saints. It involves two family members, both healed from a life-threatening disease. They prayed with Holy Cross fathers for Father Peyton’s intercession. To date, both are symptom-free of the disease.
There are also plans underway in North Easton, Massachusetts, where Father Peyton is buried among fellow Holy Cross fathers and brothers in the congregation’s cemetery.
The time between this new declaration and possible beatification would see the exhumation of Father Peyton’s body and transfer of his remains to a permanent resting place in the Father Peyton Center. Father Raymond believes it providential that during the past year the minis-try has been in the planning stages for a museum focused on Father Peyton’s ministry.
Said Father Raymond: “Our fondest hope is that if he is beatified and canonized, he would be recognized as a saint of family prayer.”