Thursday, April 21, 2011


As a father, I have flashes of thoughts and feelings that I would like to convey to my children to express my love and respect for them, but I rarely find the time or energy to express myself.  We all know how we feel when we are encouraged, valued, and loved.  Consequently, expressing feelings of love and respect should be high priorities.  However, I never quite hit the mark.

As leaders, we all can create space for growth for the people around us with encouraging words and actions.

Recently, my wife wrote a beautiful letter which eloquently communicated her love and respect for my eldest son Conor as his confirmation date into our church approached.  She acknowledged, encouraged, and guided our son on how to grow.  Here is a great example of a leader creating a foundation for growth by confirming who a person is and who they could be.

Dear Conor,

            Congratulations on all of the work you have done to complete your Confirmation.
This past year in C.C.D. has been a journey to becoming an adult in our Catholic faith.  Always remember that your faith is a gift from God to be enjoyed, explored, and lived daily. As Catholics, we are asked to glorify God by going to church, and to serve His people in the community. You have been a wonderful servant by alter serving, serving at spaghetti dinners, and working with Habitat for Humanity. In the community, you have worked at TOPS, coached rec soccer, and helped neighbors by shoveling snow. Remember, when you give yourself to others, you are a blessing to them no matter how small the task.  You have always been willing to help out when called, and we pray that this seed that has been planted in you will continue to grow.  God will always provide for you and has given you all of the tools you need to lead the life that He has planned for you. Remember that God has given us a guide, the Bible. Use these words to find your way and to understand the faith that you have been given.
            You are a great blessing in our family. You are always willing to help out at home by cooking, babysitting, doing chores, and setting a good example. We have watched you grow into a confident, bright, pleasant, and responsible young adult. You have worked to build a strong foundation of knowledge, faith, and love. You have always been a joy to be with, your laughter and sense of humor are contagious and your strong will and determination are a wonderful example to others.
            Conor, we love you and are praying for you during this exciting time in your life. We hope that you  know how much you are loved and appreciated. You have taught us so much and we pray that you will always continue to grow in your faith. Receive the Gifts of the Holy Spirit - Wisdom, Understanding, Council, Fortitude, Knowledge, Piety, and Fear of the Lord and know that they are Gods gift to you. You are God's gift to us.

                                                            We love you,

                                                            Dad and Mom

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