As was my custom I came into the Chapel at the ProCathedral one Wednesday morning to attend Adoration and Mass. At the time I was working at the John Paul II Centre for Life. This particular day, I noticed that the elderly man whom I always greeted after Mass, was struggling with his mobility and walking unsteadily with the aid of two sticks. I went over to see if he needed assistance and sat down beside him, introducing myself for the first time. “I am the lady who writes all those ads in your parish bulletin”, I said jokingly, “asking for baby equipment for the John Paul II Centre for Life.” He laughed and asked me to tell him a little about my work as a Pregnancy Counsellor.
After a few minutes of sharing, he said “You know Carmel, I would love to go out and buy you a new pram right now, but I am too old and wouldn’t have any idea where to begin!” I responded: “Even a very small donation to our work would be a great help, John.” To this he relied “Would you give me the address details to send you a cheque?” After doing this I made sure he left safely and we said our goodbyes. Sadly, his health deteriorated rapidly and I did not see him again.
Three days later the Centre received a cheque for $200 from John, to be used for purchasing baby equipment.
Some months later the John Paul II Centre also received a generous bequest from the estate of the late John Strassmeyer. I thank God for this encounter which led to such a blessing of provision for the work of the Centre. RIP John! God bless you for your generous heart.
John’s bequest has been used, as his heart desired, to support mothers and babies with unplanned pregnancies who are in need.