This is the first in a series of guest blogs from Thomas Nightengale who knew Father Rother personally. Thomas will give his thoughts on the Beatification which he will attend in September. The title is taken from the book that is available about the life of Father Rother.
ON THE WAY: On September 23rd, 2017 Father Stanley Rother will be beatified in Oklahoma City. In December of 2016, Pope Francis recognized the martyrdom of Father Rother, the first native born American martyr. Father Rother was brutally murdered at a mission in Guatemala in 1981. Even though he knew he was on a murder list there, he insisted that the shepherd must remain with his people. My pastor, Father Alojzy Waleczek, himself an escapee and survivor of the Nazi Dachau Concentration Camp, took me with him to meet two seminarians in Okarche, Oklahoma. I was one of his altar servers and 11 or 12 years old at the time. I remember very clearly that one of the seminarians was Stanley Rother. Later I learned that my parents had met and knew his parents. I feel honored and blessed to have met this humble man of God, even though it was back in the 1950s.
For more information or to purchase the book, click on the following link: