We inevitably carry parts of our fathers with us wherever we go.

Pictured here is an Elgin pocket watch that was given to my father when he was in the Christian Brothers. It’s inscribed “BRO. J,” for Brother Jerome, his name when he was in religious life. Following the attack on Pearl Harbor, he left the Christian Brothers shortly before taking his final vows and enlisted in the Army.

The watch still works. The last time I carried it with me was for my ordination, in my jacket pocket, close to my heart.

Below are the holy medals I wear: a Miraculous Medal, a gold cross, a medal of St. Stephen (bought when I was in Rome a few years ago) and a new addition, a cross made from Pennsylvania coal, from the mines near where my Slovak grandfather worked over 100 years ago. It serves as a daily reminder of where I came from.

May we always remember where we come from — and where we hope to go! — because of the men who brought us into this world.

St. Joseph, patron of fathers, pray for us!

Happy Father’s Day!