Tag Archives: fathers

Daddy Don’t Go – you can help make it happen!

Daddy Don’t Go is a documentary that chronicles the lives of 4 young men in NYC who are trying to be good dads against the odds. You can help make this documentary happen through Kickstarter.

Here’s the scoop on the film:

Daddy Don’t Go is a feature length documentary that captures a year in the lives of four young men in New York City as they struggle against poverty to reach their full potential as fathers. The film poses urgent questions that expand the ongoing national dialogue concerning fatherhood. Can a man be a good dad in spite of not being a great provider? How does being a father shift a man’s identity? In true vérité style, Daddy Don’t Go will capture the crucial, intimate father-child relationship over time and without censorship. Alex, Nelson, Omar and Roy shatter the deadbeat dad stereotype, redefining what it means to be a good father for all men.

You can help make this documentary happen through Kickstarter.

Here’s the trailer:

You can help make this documentary happen through Kickstarter.

Here’s my connection to the project:

My friend Andrew Osborne is a co-director. Andrew and I met some ten years ago at a Presbyterian Peacemaking Program conference. Andrew worked the tech for the conference. I provided much of the content that he projected. Truth be told, our relationship got off to a rocky start. I asked for presentations that stretched the capacity of our equipment. When things did not go easily, I stormed off. Upon my return, I discovered that Andrew had patiently and carefully worked through things and a beautiful friendship began. We have nurtured the friendship since. We worked a couple more Peacemaking Conferences together and we made a video for the Peacemaking Program’s twenty-fifth anniversary. Over the past couple years, Andrew has helped with several video or photographic projects for the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations. He has done so professionally and well. I believe in Andrew and his work. I am proud to support Daddy Don’t Go.

You too can help make this documentary happen through Kickstarter.

See you along the Trail.

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Filed under Friends, Movie, Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations

First came baseball

baseball_2I am not sure I would have asked the question. Too many people have experienced abuse, abandonment, failure to love, and more from their fathers. Too many fathers have died too young. Too many wounds remain unhealed.

“What is your favorite memory of your father or your father figure?” Bob Brashear, pastor of West-Park Presbyterian Church, asked near the end of his sermon today.

My first thoughts went to those who had negative experiences of their fathers. I felt my heartstrings tightened as I considered the profound pain the simple question could touch.

Images of my father, gone too long, filled my head and heart. He was not perfect. None of us are. But he was a good, good man who loved me and my brother and sister well.

Memories came at me as thick as gnats on a hot, sultry night. When it came my turn to speak, I went with my first memories:

“Baseball. Playing catch in the back yard. Going to games. Baseball. In Pittsburgh.” I remembered, although I did not share, that as I child, when I would have to go to bed before a Pirates game finished, I would wake up in the morning to find a piece of paper with the score written in my father’s handwriting.

Memories. Blessed memories. As I rejoice in mine, my heart goes out to those who know pain.

Happy Father’s Day to fathers, stepfathers, grandfathers, and all, male and female alike, who have filled the role of fathers.

See you along the Trail.

P.S.:
Dodgers 3
Pirates 6

 

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Filed under Baseball, Family

Spring, 1864

Spring’s first blush
kisses me as I push my way
through the door,
onto the porch;
my old hips groan louder than the hinges.

One, two, three painful steps, I shuffle
to the post where I stop and lean
as I try to catch my breath.

Air fills my lungs anew,
as my gaze falls upon the field:
unplowed,
unworked,
untouched it stands.
Tears well in my eyes –
it will stay that way this year.

My sons,
my proud, precious sons
will not plow or
work or
touch the field
or any field
this year
or year.

They forever lie,
in peaceful repose I hope,
in some
unknown, unnamed field:
some
God-forsaken,
God-blessed,
God-damned,
Virginian field,
victims, as are we all,
of this unending war.

Never will my boys
love or
play or
work this field again.
In peaceful rest,
they forever lie –
so I hope,
so I pray.

From the South,
a crow flies into sight,
its raucous call
breaks my reverie.

I rub one gnarled hand
against another –
hands twisted by life will never again hold a plow –
and I wonder if
down in Virginia, where Spring has surely come,
some spent, used-up man, some grieving father,
whose sons marched away to bugle’s call under flapping banners,
now gazes on a field
unplowed,
unworked,
untouched,
and remembers, wonders, weeps.

with thanks to Don Shriver
DL 5759
5 October 2012

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Filed under Poem

Transitions

Prayers this night for friends
who say farewell to fathers,
marking a significant change in life,
making a new beginning.

Prayers this night for those I do not know
who say farewell to loved ones,
marking a significant change in life,
making a new beginning.

Prayers this night for everyone
who makes transitions, be those changes
sought, desired, yearned for or
unexpected and unwelcome.

Peace to all.

See you along the Trail.

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Filed under Friends