Together We Grow Capital Campaign 2017-2020
Holy Family Love Stories 3

Laurie Frawely

And Cancer showed me that here at Holy Family, we can genuinely call ourselves brothers and sisters in Christ.

I was a 42 year-old mother-of-four when the doctor broke the news: “It’s cancer. You should find an oncologist and surgeon.”  3D mammography had caught it early. I was lucky the doctor said. My husband and I were left speechless. We weren’t prepared for that news and it brought us to our knees. There were so many questions and no answers. We had never felt so alone. Sitting in the parking lot of the doctor’s office, we sat in tearful silence.
I didn’t know anyone with cancer. I had no idea what to do. Where do I find the right doctor?  How do I tell my kids?  My parents?  Can I beat it? What if I don’t? I was reluctant to tell anyone – it seemed so self-serving. And how do you tell someone anyway?
There were some people I had to tell – close family members and friends. I also had to tell the church. After all, I was going to be teaching young PSR students and I didn’t want my diagnosis or treatment to scare them. And letting people know made all the difference. Over the next eight months, I underwent three surgeries, two rounds of chemotherapy and six weeks of radiation. I lost fingernails. I lost my hair. But I never lost my faith. In fact, it was quite the opposite.

My family and friends, in fact friends I never knew I had,  were there for me. Families from our Holy Family, many of whom I’d never met, were there for me. There were words of comfort. There were prayers. There were hot meals for my family on days after treatment when I couldn’t get out of bed. There was even a special prayer service with the teachers and children of Sunday morning’s PSR classes.
Twelve months later, my oncologist uses the word “cured” when he talks to me. I didn’t know anyone could be “cured” from cancer. I’m going to be OK. My family is going to be OK. I’m going to see my sons and daughters graduate from high school, college, get married, and have families of their own. Someday, hopefully a LONG time from now, I’ll be called “Grandma.”

God works in mysterious ways. No one ever wants to say that Cancer is a good thing, but this terrifying diagnosis has actually been a wonderful experience. Cancer brought out the best in my family. Cancer showed me that I have friends I never knew I had. Cancer showed me the kindness of strangers. And Cancer showed me that here at Holy Family, we can genuinely call ourselves brothers and sisters in Christ. You were there for me. Many of you didn’t even know me. But you were there for me.

Your prayers, thoughts, words and acts of kindness will never be forgotten by our family. Our faith in God and family is stronger than we ever imagined it could be. The support from our church family made this difficult time all that more bearable. I don’t know what I would have done without the support and love from the parishioners of Holy Family. I was, and still am, so comforted by the warmth shown to me during a very dark time. My family and I thank you from the bottom of our hearts. God bless Holy Family.

Josh Svoboda

Holy family is very important to me as it is the one thing in my teenage life that does not change.

The church will always hold original fundamental values that shouldn’t just apply to people of faith but all people. The church holds compassion, kindness, and love as core values. It is impossible to measure how important these values are.
Some of my favorite memories happened while on the youth search retreat. This might have been meeting friends whom I’d never have meet if not for this amazing program. It might also be Rob’s (SHY minister) understanding that sitting around doing worksheets teaches us nothing other than church is another high school. This program is so much more than a high school. Unlike high school you actually use what you learn in real life. This program is a huge part of holy family.
This community is an amazing one. I also happen to have an amazing youth director. This guy literally will stop what he’s doing at 6 p.m. on a Sunday to help me make life decisions and just answer faith related questions. This community has an amazing unorthodox feeling I haven’t anywhere else.
Having a dedicated youth hang out space would mean that the people who run this place realize that the teenagers who go there are the future. It also would mean more activities available to us to do. It is amazing to think about having but we must remember that as nice as one would be to have we must pray that everything works the way god wants it to.

We celebrate. We grow. We live our faith.
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