Dec 9, 2007

P and C, Fixer-Uppers of Society

The people I most admire are those who work to fix our decaying society. Mr. & Mrs. PC are one example and theirs is a very inspiring story, especially because of their backgrounds and former lives.

P's parents were divorced when he was entering his teenage years. He admits to leaving home to become a "street kid." The young man became involved in the drug culture, and in his instability found and left numerous jobs. At the urging of his Dad, he obtained a GED and entered the Navy, but was quickly discharged because of drug use. During this time, I remember writing several times to P and encouraging him to change his life, but P continued to make mistakes. Nevertheless, he was prayed for as one of our fallen-away Catholics.

C's life was much worse as she was the daughter of a drug-addicted mother and did not really have a father. When C met P, she was easily attracted to the tall, dark and handsome young man whose wit and intelligence continued to be betrayed by irresponsible actions.

P and C, as many young people now do, began to live together and their relationship became more serious with time. C was goal-oriented and learned a skill that allowed her to support herself. C's external loveliness mimics her interior beauty, which is demonstrated by a special kindness and patience that may have come from the sensitivity she developed as an injured child.

P's life before the age of 30 alternated between good intentions and irresponsible actions. While promising C that someday they would marry, it took ten years for the event to occur. By then P had finally obtained a good job in which he was advancing. I was fortunate to be invited to attend their wedding. Even though only an "occasional" Catholic, P assured me that a real wedding was a "church wedding," and so the marriage ceremony in a University chapel was witnessed by a Dominican priest.

The reception was where I found out that P's life had dramatically changed. Toasts were presented to the bride and groom by their friends, and I have never heard such strong and fervent accolades. Several young people took the mike and explained, some tearfully, how P and C had changed their lives by drawing them away from the drug culture and helping them to restart their lives. Frankly, I was in tears as I heard their stories, including the one told by C's mother when she publicly admitted that she was raised and taken care of by C, rather than the reverse.

One young woman's story is illustrative of how P and C committed to fixing part of a society gone bad. This friend from the drug culture had numerous boyfriends and three children by some of them. P and C took the young woman into their home and helped her to go to school and raise their boys. The boys now consider P their Dad and C their alternate Mother. The boys' mother now has a good job and lives a couple of hours away with her sons, but they visit P and C frequently on weekends. Best of all, the boys have turned out to be well-behaved kids who volunteer and help others.

What are P and C doing today? Well, they've found that there are three more children to help and P and C have stepped into the void of another drug-addicted (crack cocaine) mother. Initially they agreed to back up the step-grandmother who was taking care of the children, but because of her poor health, she could not continue. P And C are now taking care of these three children and are likely to adopt them.

What's wrong with the world? Is it that there are so many thrower-downers, or is it that there are not enough picker-uppers? Dear reader, please become a picker-upper to change lives--to change them for the better, just like P and C are doing.

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