In order to honor all Fr. Allen’s hard work, care and dedication, the Church of Annunciation scheduled a surprise “We Love You George” Sunday. An artist in the church made the poster which Fr. Allen saw when he stood at the back of the church ready to sing the processional hymn for that Sunday. We all went into the parish hall following the service and presented Fr. Allen, with a “We Love You George” printed tee shirt. ET was the big movie at the time and Fr. Allen often used the movie in his sermons, so we hired ET to come and help us celebrate.
I read the following letter which I wrote on behalf of Gregory to his friend, Father George. Yes, it was typed on one of those old fashioned typewriters.
November 14, 1982
Dear Father George:
All your other friends are getting to say how much they love and care for you, and I wanted to say a few things too.
I really enjoyed it when you used to visit me
in the hospital. When my mommy and daddy would have to go home and the stories and the rocking would be over until the next day, I knew that my friend Father George would come and spend time with me and keep me company. My nurse friends were so much fun but they were often real, real busy, and it was sure nice to have some male company too.
I knew the first time you came to see me that you were real nice and real smart too. I knew that you knew that I was no ordinary little boy, and no one even had to tell you.
Just before I was born into this world, the Lord told me that my stay here was going to be very very short but it as going to be very special and meaningful. He told me not to be afraid but that I was going to be in a big hospital for a few weeks and meet lots of nice people. He told me not to worry about a thing – He would spare me any pain and all I had to do was be as cute and adorable as possible. I didn’t think He would lie to me because He seemed real nice and He was so warm and loving so I was never afraid when I was in the hospital and it was lots of fun to have so many people pay attention to me all the time and play with me. I loved when my mommy and daddy would come to see me – I was always on my best behavior when they were there, and they always thought I was a little angel and they were so very right. The Lord was right – I was never in pain although I would cry when they came after me with those IV needles, but it was mostly for effect.
When my work here on earth was finished, the Lord himself came down to get me. He was so very proud of me for living up to every expectation He had of me and far surpassing them. He said that so very often He has great plans for people but they just don’t seem to really try to follow them so He tries not to get His hopes up too high so He won’t be continuously disappointed. He was so pleased with me because my mission was a bigger success than He could have ever dreamed – the switchboard in heaven was just overloaded with calls about me.
We went to my memorial service together before traveling to heaven. It was such a beautiful service, and the Lord was extremely impressed. I couldn’t figure out why anyone would be crying though – I guess you earth people do things differently than we do them here – no one here ever cries. You said so many neat things about me and about this place. Are you sure you have never been here before? Your homily pleased the Lord so very much that He put it on page one of the Divine Book of Homilies, and you can’t imagine what a great honor that is because it sure is a full book.
When we finally got to heaven, you can’t even begin to picture the great celebration they had for me. They all told me what a great job I did being cute and adorable and when I told them that I hardly even worked at it, they said “that’s even better – we are always looking for natural talent.” They signed me up for the Cherub Players Group. I get to star in so many productions – we are always celebrating something up here. The Christmas pageant ought to be quite a spectacular!
Life up here in heaven is sure full and real busy but I make sure that I take time out from all my important heavenly functions to check on my parish family and my relatives. You have some great sermons Father George. Are you really sure you were never here before?
God wanted me to be sure to send you his praise for all your good works and all the other Annunciation saints send you their love and good wishes. We sure do like to be remembered by our earth friends and family.
Well I am off to softball practice – I’ve been playing a hell of a second base (forgive the pun) and was nominated as Rookie of the Year. I just want you to know that I am happy that you were such a good friend to my mommy and daddy because I know that they wanted me to be a little earth baby and take me on the swings and play ball with me and go fishing but there will be plenty of time for all that when they join me in this paradise but the Lord was right – He really did need my help straightening some things out up here – He said that He knew for sure that organizing things would be in my blood but I’m not sure what He meant by that.
I will be sure to keep in touch, and I hope you will continue to do so. I just want you to know that I have spoken to those in authority and when your earthly mission is completed and you close your eyes, I will be the one to take your hand and bring you this incredible place.
All my love, your little friend in heaven, Gregory.