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One family, three vocations

Deacon Greg Kandra - published on 06/07/15


From The Catholic Free Press in Worcester:

Jim and Patti Duffy have eight children. Five of them are still at home. Their three oldest have entered religious life at St. Benedict Center in Still River. Most recently, their son, Michael, now known as Brother Patrick Joseph, MICM, joined his twin, Brother Christopher Isaac, who entered the center’s monastery nearly four years ago. In a nearby convent is Sister Mary Imelda, their biological sister. Mr. Duffy said he and his wife didn’t do anything special to promote vocations in their house. However, living out the faith was first and foremost. “We basically made their lives very God-centered, very Christ centered,” he explained, adding that everything was based upon that first question found in traditional catechisms. “Why did God make us?,” he asked rhetorically, noting, “We brought them up to say ultimately your aim is to get to heaven.” The Duffy children were also taught to view Jesus, Mary and Joseph as their extended family. The family also said their morning and evening prayers, in addition to an evening rosary. “Saying the rosary every single day as a family has been huge for us,” he said. At home, instead of watching current television shows, the Duffy children were entertained with more wholesome movies from the 1940s. The music played in the home was of a more innocent genre as well. The family then started going to the St. Benedict Center community attached to Immaculate Heart of Mary School. “That opened up a whole Catholic culture for us,” Mr. Duffy said, adding that his children were exposed to religious and “the joyous life they lead.” He said this allowed his children to see they led a “very normal, very happy and human existence.” “The kids made friends with them (the religious),” he said. “They had them to look up to.” “Everything was Catholic-centered in a very natural way,” he said of his children’s upbringing.

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