Fr. Enzo’s father, Benedetto Addari, taking care of the horses.
“Sa ta fa’!”, “We must do this!”
This was my father’s philosophy towards life. During his youth, Benedetto Addari was caught as a POW in Belgrade during WW II. For many years, no one knew what had happened to him. The day when he returned home, the first person he met was his younger sister Elvira. She did not recognize him at all.
Importance of Hard Work
Upon my father’s return, he never said “no” to work. It was part of his upbringing. Once his father passed away, everyone in the family had to work to survive. The summer was a time of major work on our small farm. The day started very early at sunrise and was over at sunset. I remember the many nights he then spent in the stable to be sure that everything was going fine when the cows were ready to give birth. An episode comes to my mind when his cousin had an accident while caring for his cows. He was rushed to the hospital and was there for several days. My father and my uncle, his brother, decided to start their workday earlier to care for their cousin’s livestock. My father never said no even when there were holidays and feast days. Caring for the community and loved ones always came first.
Importance of Family
Everything was done for the family, for the children were the flowers of the family. My father and my mother understood that both my brother and I needed to go to school in order to face the new realities of post-war Italian society. For them it was more work; it was not easy but they did it until the end.
My father’s commitments were not only for his immediate family but also for the extended family and anyone who was in need. I remember him working hard to make a path in the snow in town for people who were assisting in a nearby town affected by a major flood.
“Sa ta fa’!”, “We must do this!” was their philosophy and way of life. It stemmed from their faith, upbringing, and the family values they lived at home.
He was delighted when in 1979 he came to USA for a visit. In Philadelphia, where his father had worked at the beginning of 1900, he said ‘Papa’ ha lavorato qui!’ (Daddy has worked here!).
We carry through our lives these imprints.
Even the smallest moments of caring for others leave long impressions on others’ memories. As St. Louis Center grows, there are times we must join forces for the greater good. My father paved the path for my success by helping those around him and giving me a sense of what community really means. I ask you to join me in continuing that path as St. Louis Center prepares for growth in the future, as we renovate and upgrade the campus and continue to serve.
This Father’s Day, help us celebrate the love of all fathers as we pave the path for our family of residents of St. Louis Center. Happy Father’s Day to all the fathers.
God’s blessings to you,
Fr. Enzo Addari, SdC
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