Monsignor Desmond Dillon died last week at the age of 99. He will be missed in this community -- and on this page. He has been a regular contributor to the letters to the editor column for many years.
He was selected as our weekly Letter Best writer three times.
His letters are the model of disagreeing without being disagreeable. We will miss his thoughtful contributions on a variety of topics.
Here are a few excerpts of his wisdom.
Never miss a local story.
Jan. 10, 1999
Our nation has become bitter, divided and demeaned by the Clinton controversy. The $40-plus million Whitewater investigation allowed by Congress has become a legal, unfettered, sordid search into nonrelevant White House sins. It has no connection to Whitewater.
Congress has allowed a special investigator to turn up and spread, in salacious detail, scandals that have shocked and shamed our nation. Who has this moral right? It is morally wrong to humiliate and shame President Clinton and Monica Lewinsky before the world. The Gospel of Matthew condemns scandal spreaders, stating a millstone should be tied around their necks and they be drowned.
Since Congress has legally allowed this scandalous detraction, what better post-mortem to the Clinton controversy than for Congress to apologize to the nation by enacting legislation that would make liable defamation of character of citizens and public servants in all matters unrelated to their public or private service?
Though I am a conservative who has never voted for President Clinton, I feel the enormous moral damage done to our country, to our children and to the world needs a national protest.
May 16, 2010
Did you ever notice a newly married couple, glowing with joy and happiness? Ever see the more than 52 percent of married couples getting a divorce, now filled with anger and hatred for one another?
If they had tried to be servant leaders to each other, each serving the other in love as Pope John Paul advised, maybe their marriage still could thrive, like the leaves of a well-watered plant.
So many people come together just for social and sexual reasons. Too many people don't have morals, having experienced too many hook-ups in high school or college. Marriage just becomes a legalization of a physical and social relationship, instead of a true partnership in which each seeks to serve the other.
What is the future of promiscuous high school or college students? They become bored and uninterested in each other. They try to find the thrill of romance by cheating and end up as social and sexual iconoclasts.
Isn't it wonderful to see people happily married after 50, 60 and 70 years, still servant leaders to each other.
July 12, 2009
For those of us Tri-Citians who have lived almost a hundred years, we have seen many changes from an economy of scarcity to an economy of abundance to an economy of information, with ups and downs of depression and prosperity. With the economy of communication we have seen the tremendous advance in information and science and the decline of Christianity, especially in Europe.
Even though Christianity, the culture of our Founding Fathers, has the most sublime teachings (in comparative religion), it is fading. With this fading there is a loss of value of human beings as children of God, born for a happy successful and responsible life on Earth and an accountable eternal happy life with God forever.
While Christianity tries to reveal the transcendental description of heaven of angels, saints and thrones in human expressions, we join with science and St. Thomas Aquinas a great theologian who said, "Quid sit Deus?" -- Who is God?
The only way to reasonably meld science's intelligent design and big bang is into the simple faith-revealed Hebrew words of Genesis, "Bereshit bara Elohim" -- In the beginning was the Holy One. Intelligent Designer Big Banger First Cause Uncaused -- Yahweh I AM forever.
Tri-City centenarians live forever!
April 1, 2012
After 10 days at Lourdes and excellent treatment, I was released to home hospice care, to comfort the rest of my journey toward Hamlet's "undiscovered country from whose bourn no traveler returns." I am grateful for their promise to ease and comfort my short journey to eternity.
I am already curious to know how the hand nailed to the cross is related to the hand that separated the water from the land in Genesis and the hand in cosmology that was the Intelligent Designer of the universe. Earth is so small and I am miniscule and as I travel to my denouement, I have the comfort of hospice, which brings the Christian message of love and forgiveness along with comfort and consolation.
I have seen so many people die, some only turning their face to the wall with little hope. Everyone living faces the same call to that "undiscovered country from whose bourn no traveler returns."
Thank you, Lourdes and Hospice, for the Christian care and comfort that bring hope with love and forgiveness.