The Tightly Wrapped Gifts of Father Thaddeus

By Sue Marquette Poremba

My knees shook when I rang the doorbell of the rectory. I’d never met Father Thaddeus before, but I had heard stories from my aunts. Rough, they said. Mean sometimes. Definitely scary.

“You don’t want to talk to him, Suzy,” my aunt said. “Find someone else.”

Except in my little town, there was no one else to talk to if you needed a priest.…

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The Singing One

By Sue Marquette Poremba

My earliest memory from church is singing the simple hymn “Jesus Loves Me” with my brother and sister. We were raised in my grandparents’ Methodist church, where my grandmother was the Sunday School teacher. Each Christmas featured the children’s pageant, and I remember standing there with my siblings, staring at the floor, mumbling the words.…

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