Please Pray for Fr. Jack Witbrock
Fr. Jack Witbrock by his altar.
The Patriarch of Antioch personally approved the Western Rite in the 1950s. Thus, although the Western Rite Vicariate only rules North America, Western Rite Antiochian parishes can be found outside one continent or geographical area. For decades, Fr. Jack Witbrock has headed WR efforts in New Zealand. He recently sent this e-mail (though he seems to have the wrong e-mail listed for me; I'm grateful for its having reached me at all):
You may have heard that we have been having some health problems. Shortly after my letter on the Breviary, I was accused by my doctor of diabetes (type II) and although with the help of the late Dr Atkins I have managed to hold the glucose readings mostly within the 4-8 range considered normal, I have recently been suspected of a stroke by my family who noticed me slurring my speech (which does not mean using an american or NZ dialect instead of RP!) and having a lop-sided face, and even dribbling a little. No recent stroke was found, but I should appreciate prayers that, if the Lord does want me to finish the present task, he should maintain my health sufficiently. My wife also has had an operation for a small malignant breast area, followed by radiology. These have inspired our children to rally round concerning the house and garden, for which we are grateful; but apart from limitation of time they have not impeded the transcription of the music (from the 1952 Liber Usualis). I do not want to leave its completion to another, and there seem at present to be some 10,000 miles still to go.May the grace of the Holy Spirit grant him healing, a long and blessed life, and at the last, admittance into His Heavenly Kingdom, where with all the saints he shall render thanks, blessing, and worship to the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, one God, world without end. Amen.
So please pray for this unworthy priest and his wife Julia, of your charity.
(Fr. Jack also writes that he has been working on a Holy Week-Easter Missal including the pre-1955 services, which can be downloaded and printed here.)
(For the record, yes, I woke up early!)
Labels: WR News