On Friday May 22nd Father Joseph his mom and dad and two siblings went to Erie Pennsylvania to visit his oldest sister. She is a Carmelite nun living in the convent up in Erie, Pennsylvania. She was transferred there from the Alexandria South Dakota convent in March. This was truly a blessing for Faher Joseph. The thought of having to go to Alexandria South Dakota would be an awesome burden at this time in his life.so God continues to show that He is in charge and made this trip much more reachable. The group met at All Saints and left at 6 a.m. Friday morning. A kind parishioner drove them to the airport. Father Joseph was able to go through the special assistance Lane at TS A and he had the special pre checked card from TSA as well as the others in the group. This time he walked through the scanner instead of needing a pat down by the TSA worker. The flight went smoothly and landing was soft. It only took 10 minutes for the rental car to be ready, he enjoyed a little lunch with his aunt sister Denise Roche, and then he drove in the backseat an hour and a half from Buffalo to Erie Pennsylvania.He had a little rest then wound care change dinner and a visit with sister Mary Agnes ,his sister whom he has not seen in the last 2 years. Saturday he was able to concelebrate mass with Father Rouch and his brother Father Kevin Peek. He was able to visit his sister again 2 times that day. The weather was more than awesome. For those of you who are not familiar with the Carmelite way of life when one goes to visit a family member in the convent they have to sit in a sitting room and visit the sibling through a grate. You see each other face to face but you're not allowed to hug or shake hands. Sunday he was able to visit again. The Feast of the Holy Spirit was truly a blessing for Faher Joseph. It is hard with a chronically ill patient to try to make sure that the needs are met at the other end as they are met in their own home. One of the things that help Father Joseph on the strip was his essential oil diffuser. These essential oils have brought him a calming sense.The power of smell cannot be underestimated. Therefore if you or a loved one has chronic pain or suffering it would benefit you to research and use essential oils.We also are in the process of seeing essential oils may be able to be used topically on his squamous cell carcinoma. Father Joseph truly enjoyed his visit with his sister. He returned through the rain Monday evening and again was met by parishioner who graciously drove him back to his rectory. He was grateful for his comfortable bed and familiar surroundings. Thank you for all your prayers and support that helped make this trip run so smoothly.
His strength is such that he is awake for about 2 hours and sleeps 2 hours. His graft-versus-host disease wounds are pretty much staying the same and we hope that these will progress to healing at some point. We are happy that he is able to eat and talk. His nieces and nephews have benefited from him teaching them memorable things such as singing playing chess games telling stories and just sharing time.Please continue to keep him in your prayers as we know you will and we continue to keep all of you in our prayers thank you