Friday, 05 August 2011
From Huron Ridge in Port Carling Ontario:
I usually write when I am touched by something with which many of us can relate. Sometimes I write out of abundance of gratitude and joy to have been born where I was born, and to have grown up with all of you. At other times, I write out genuine sadness. I do not mean to be morbid or depressing, but I ‘feel’ for the travails of others, and take no joy in their sufferings. I skim The Telegram on line most mornings, and seldom miss the Obituaries. In days gone by it was to keep abreast of the passing of my parents friends, these days I encounter more of my own.
I usually love the first week of August, and look back with a fondness on Regatta Day, a fondness based more on myth than reality. Nevertheless, after 50 years, I still know when it takes place and search out the weather, the times, and the results. This week was no different, but at the same time it was quite different. The pictures and stories that greeted me this week were quite painful.
Whatever all of you may think of former Premier Brain Tobin, I have nothing but good memories of him and his wife. I have lunch with him here occasionally, our next is scheduled for September, and I owe him a real debt of gratitude for what he did for my oldest son Jonathan. Brian used to be a Director at Lionsgate Films, and it was through his good auspices that my oldest son Jonathan obtained his first internship in Hollywood. Fathers never forget such kindnesses, and neither shall I. The visible pain on the face of Brian and his wife Jodean can only really be understood by parents. I think back to all those nights when my two were going through the drinking stage, and marvel aloud that there but for the grace of God go many of us, most certainly me and mine. My heart goes out to Jack Tobin and to his parents. It also goes out to his deceased friend and his parents. No one of us should have to endure the death of a child. But my focus this week is on the son of my friend and I have absolutely nothing to offer but remembrance in prayer.
I was pained too by the picture of Ray Lahey. I have ceased being angry, now I am just saddened. My heart too goes out to his family whom many of us know and who carry this burden of shame. A friend of mine wondered aloud if Lahey would get less of a sentence than Tobin, and the comment both put me off and made me uncomfortable.
There was another story I read this week which touched many of us and left me even more saddened. I leave them and all the others in the hands of God.