Friday, March 9, 2012

McCaskey Talks to Hibernians in Advance of St. Patrick's Day

Chicago Bears Senior Director and Sporting Chance Press author Patrick McCaskey will speak on Sports and Faith to the Milwaukee Division of the Ancient Order of the Hibernians on March 14, 2012 at 7:15 p.m. - Derry's Pub, 54th and Bluemound. McCaskey speaks about his life with the Chicago Bears and how faith has played an important role in his family and those he's known in his 37 years with the team. McCaskey is the author of a Sports and Faith: Stories of the Devoted and the Devout published by Sporting Chance Press.

Most people have some sense of the achievements of Patrick's grandfather George "Papa Bear" Halas who helped found the NFL, played professional football himself for 10 years and coached the Monsters of the Midway for 40. But few know that Patrick's dad Edward came from a highly successful and honored family from Lancaster, Pennsylvania that includes generations of highly decorated military men, a noted music publisher and an educator whose name adorns a large high school. In Patrick McCaskey's book, Sports and Faith: Stories of the Devoted and the Devout, he relays a few brief stories that his father passed down about his family including Patrick's grandmother Kit. Perhaps one of the least known of the McCaskeys from out east, Kit was a great source of pride and love in the McCaskey family.

The McCaskeys were a mix of Scots and Irish going way back. Mixing the Scots with the Irish was good thing in the opinion of Patrick's father Edward. According to the book, Kit was Irish through and through. Kit alone ran a household of many children and three adult men. Only God knows the number of others Kit reached out to help from her household in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, but she was known for her kindness to anyone who came to her door--and many did.

Kit had a deep faith and her answer to any problems was "that was a sign." Like many of the Irish, Kit believed that God's hand was an active one in our lives. According to the author, when Ed and Tom McCaskey came home from Caddying one day, their father told them that their mother was in the hospital. Kit had miscarried twins. Edward ran off to see his mother at St. Joseph's hospital. When he got to his mother's bedside, she said, "I'm all right Edward, the Little Flower sent me a shower of roses."

Saint Therese, the Little Flower, had lived a short life. Famous for her childlike trust in God, she didn't see death as the end of her work for God. She looked forward to working after death in God's name and she had said, "After my death, I will let forth a shower of roses, I will spend my heaven doing good upon the earth." Saint Therese's "Little Way" was her belief that God is everywhere--in every situation and every person--and in the ordinary, simple details in life.

Ancient Order of Hibernians is America’s oldest Irish Catholic Fraternal Organization founded concurrently in the coal-mining region of Pennsylvania and New York City in May, 1836. Its roots trace back to similar societies that existed in Ireland for more than 300 years. The Order provides a continuing bridge with Ireland for those who are generations removed from their ancestral homeland.
Sporting Chance Press is the publisher of Patrick McCaskey's Sports and Faith: Stories of the Devoted and the Devout and other fine sports books. Sports and Faith: Stories of the Devoted and the Devout is a personal chronicle of Chicago Bears Senior Director Patrick McCaskey that looks back at decades of spiritual enrichment and life lessons from athletes, coaches, religious and everyday people. McCaskey recalls the stories of those who strived to make the cut on and off the field—plus people who left comfortable lives to serve the under-served in extraordinary ways.

1 comment:

  1. This is the second Hibernian group to whom Patrick has spoken.