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  • Writer's pictureRose D

Simple Faith

In the last 5 years of my Dad’s life he had a caretaker named Sonny. Sonny never finished high school, and so he worked odd jobs and helped in the family business of running a hotel/restaurant. It was exhausting work and so taking care of a 90-year-old man for better pay was a decent alternative. Sonny is in his 40s and has a wife and 3 kids, but he took care of Dad full-time.

Most days it was just Sonny and Dad together. Family and friends would stop by for brief visits, but otherwise, after daily chores were done, it was the two of them talking on the porch, watching TV and passing the time. Dad would ask Sonny to plant mango and cashew trees in the front yard (only increasing Sonny’s workload) but he would good-naturedly agree to Dad’s plans. On one of my annual visits, I found 40 large planters lined up along the front of the house all sprouting new flowers, another one of Dad’s botanical wishes fulfilled by Sonny.

Sonny’s life is not easy, but his life goals are straightforward: take care of his family and set his kids up for a better future. He prays the rosary every night, watches mass on TV every morning and attends mass on Sundays. I once asked Sonny, “if money was no object what would you like to do?” He cracked a big smile, shook his head in disbelief, and said, “travel to the Holy Lands.”

I meet people like Sonny occasionally. People who are so solid in their faith they’re not incessantly pondering what God is. They just believe. While I’m reading Teresa and Eckhart and trying to understand faith and God, Sonny just goes about his day. When something tragic happens and my brain is twisted in knots for weeks about how the world works, Sonny will sigh, say he doesn’t understand and figures God has a plan. I envy people with Sonny’s faith.

“…for although you have hidden these things from the wise and the learned you have revealed them to little ones.”

I’ve got a trail of degrees after my last name and Sonny has none, but he is way ahead of me when it comes to his faith in God, and he probably always will be.

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