Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Happy Saint Joseph's Day!

My family history is definitely unique. Most people celebrate St. Patrick's Day with Irish gusto, whether there is a drop of Irish blood in them or not. To the best of my knowledge, I am not Irish. There have been times I have rooted for the Fighting Irish, and, when they play against my Marquette Golden Eagles (still tough to say it, they will always be my Warriors) I rooted against them. I admire St. Patrick and the Irish. But, St. Joseph Day will always be in my heart because my family has always celebrated this special day.

Many people around the world celebrate St. Joseph's day. In many places, it is more revered feast day than St. Patrick's day. Italians and Poles honor some of the best traditions of the day. Check out the following sites for full details on St. Joseph's Day customs:

My family celebrated St. Joseph's day partly because Joseph is my father's name. His favorite hobby (outside of sports) was carpentry. We always enjoyed remembering this day during his life, I always wanted to be the first one to wish him "Happy St. Joseph's Day." We continue to remember the day and him although he has been gone for nearly six years.

I don't know if others remember, but today is also the day the swallows come back to Capistrano. I can still hear my father playing the Gene Autry record of that song. When I was a young girl, we visited San Juan Capistrano. I don't know if the swallows actually leave the mission at Capistrano. There were many swallows there the last time I visited. It doesn't matter. It is a peaceful and beautiful memory which lingers.

My father's goal was to visit all of the missions in the southwest. I was with him at a few of these visits and distinctly remember the visit to Santa Barbara. He loved these ventures. Perhaps in a past life he helped to build these missions. Who knows? Answers to these questions will come at the right time.

While I cannot call him directly on the phone to wish him a happy day, I did call my mother and we shared our memories. All I know is although my father did not have the time to visit all of the missions while he walked on the earth, his spirit certainly traveled to each and every one. His spirit and determination lives on in all of his family.

Happy St. Joseph's Day, Dad.


Ashley Bartkowski said...

That was a very good one. I can't believe it has been six years! You are doing amazing and it just keeps on getting better!

Ashley Bartkowski said...

That was a very good one. I can't believe it has been six years! You are doing an amazing job and it just keeps on getting better!