April 24th, 2011 § Leave a comment § permalink
Nestled in the heartbreak and poverty of South Camden, New Jersey, sits the Scared Heart Church. It serves as a beacon of light, welcoming all persons from near and far to come inside its doors and experience the power of hope. For 35 years, a humble yet well known priest strives each day to provide peace and hope to those in need. He is innovative, compassionate, and committed to spreading God’s love to the otherwise forgotten, abandoned and hopeless.
Father Michael Doyle felt committed to peace from a young age. He has always been a positive influence to others through thought, word, and most importantly, action. Fr. Doyle aims to spread the message of hope throughout Camden, NJ, encouraging everyone to have faith that tomorrow will be a better day and despite the most horrid conditions, people can still create their own destiny.
Fr. Doyle is a champion of peace. He has dedicated his life to Camden’s deteriorating neighborhoods. He founded “The Heart of Camden,” which is a program that transforms abandoned houses into suitable dwelling places and sells them to residents. As of January 2011, the parish had rehabilitated 200 neighborhood homes. Additionally, the Sacred Heart Church functions as a soup kitchen each weekend, feeding hundreds of families in need.
While visiting Camden with my good friend, John Connors, I was privileged to be introduced to Fr. Doyle. I was moved by his compassion for others and inspired by his steadfast determination to transform the area house by house, family by family, and person by person. In our brief conversation, Fr. Doyle instilled a sense of hope within my heart just by describing the people his parish served and the mission he carries out with such humility.
From the schools to the parish and out in the violent and broken neighborhoods, Fr. Doyle is a living beacon for hope and peace. For these many reasons, Father Michael Doyle is truly a silent hero.
April 10th, 2011 § Leave a comment § permalink
Silent Heroes: John Connors
There were a variety of influential individuals in my life which led me to create the idea of the Trail of Hope. On March 23rd, 2011, the first day of my journey, a small gathering took place in a very special location known as Penn Treaty Park. My interest in Penn’s Treaty, Penn Treaty Park, and even the plight of the Lenni Lenape Indians is partially credited to my good friend, John Connors.
Decades ago, John started collecting different types of memorabilia related to William Penn’s Treaty of Amity and Friendship. As his collection grew, so did a purpose within John’s heart. He decided that he wanted to share his unique and rich treasures with others. So a few years ago he founded the Penn Treaty Museum, located across from Penn Treaty Park in Fishtown.
John’s commitment to preserving the memory of Penn’s Treaty is inspiring. He can awaken an excitement within you just by expressing his personal interest and passion of Penn’s famous treaty. He strives to keep the message of Love, Peace, and Amity alive not only by running Penn Treaty Museum but also by maintaining Penn Treaty Park.
John is a man full of perseverance and humility. When it comes to promoting a personal situation, John prefers to work behind the scenes. However, when it comes to promoting anything related to Penn’s Treaty or Penn Treaty Park, John takes the front line with determination and optimism.
John’s character inspires people to become more humble in their own lives. His presence encourages individuals to seek out the good in all things. His commitment to Penn’s Treaty and the Spirit of love, peace, and amity serves as a driving force for the creation and implementation of the Trail of Hope. John Connors is a remarkable silent hero.
If you would like learn more about Penn’s Treaty and Penn Treaty Park please visit www.penntreatymuseum.org.
March 26th, 2011 § § permalink
A silent hero inspires and influences an individual, group of individuals and in some cases, even the world. While walking, I find that my mind has the opportunity to wander and reflect upon the many people who have had an important influence on my life.
My three children, Peter, Violet, and Cathy are silent heroes. They amaze and inspire me. Each of them face challenges and obstacles yet somehow find the ability to turn them upside down and into accomplishments. They do not give up easily and consistently set goals, driven by their own personal ambitions. As a father all I did was teach them the basics of life. They took these lessons upon them and molded their own respective incredible lives.
I am truly grateful for each of them and am proud to be their father. I am humbled by their accomplishments, goodness, integrity, determination and perseverance. I am thankful for the kindness, generosity, good heart and love that they have given me over the years. I am moved by the love they sent along with me for this journey. I carry their bright spirits and energy with me as I walk the Trail.
In Peter, I see a lot of things in him now which remind me of my younger self. I am incredibly proud of him and the way he is pursuing his life. My daughter Cathy has always been generous and kind. I am proud of the life she has made for herself. My daughter Violet is sensitive and kind and I am proud of all of her accomplishments.
Violet sent a letter to MMR radio on my behalf and it brought a tear to my eye. The disc jockey read her letter on the air. I’d like to share with you that broadcast, so please click the link below to listen and enjoy.
Radio Broadcast of Violet’s Letter