My Friend, Colleague and Spiritual Advisor

by Daniel · 0 comments

“Always have time for another person.”
Brother Jack Moylan, OSF

I met Brother Jack in March of 1980 at the Suffolk County Correctional Facility. He visited me on the tier as the Catholic Chaplain. He was on the job less than a year, the first full-time Catholic Chaplain at the jail. That meeting was the start of nearly a forty-year friendship and Spiritual Direction for me. We became friends, I remember one day he said to me, Callahan, I love you, you amaze me, when we are together you call me Jack, when we have others with us you call me Brother, why? He knew the answer but I responded anyway, I said Brother you are my friend but when we are with other people you are our leader and should always be addressed with respect and honor. He smiled…

In 2014, Brother Jack traveled to Florida to visit and minister to the men at our addiction treatment facility. He spent time with all of the men and visited them in their residence, aptly named after him! Not long thereafter, I received horrible news that Brother Jack succumbed to cancer. He kept it quiet and died peacefully. That was Brother Jack, never to make a spectacle of himself. He was always looking out for others and kept the spotlight off himself. He and I worked together on a few Social Service projects, we always named them after a Bishop, usually Bishop Ryan, who was an advocate for those imprisoned.

I remember calling him and telling him we honored him by naming our Residence program after him. He said, wow, why would you do that? My thought was for exactly that reason, you shine the light on others for your entire career, and you wonder why? In fact, he had his Doctorate, he attained in the 80’s, never once did I see him boast that degree! He signed his name, Brother Jack Moylan, OSF, Order of Saint Francis, not DMin, Doctorate of Ministry!

Here we sit in 2019 and during my personal reflection for various reasons, I began to think of Brother Jack. I miss him, even though we could not talk for long periods of time, I could always call him and talk. Today, I reflect on what he would say to me if he were here. Today, I need that.



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