Great stuff, via Tony Rossi at The Christophers, who profiles actor Gary Sinise (who has just written a memoir, “Grateful American”) and describes how he found his way into the Catholic Church:
He was facing his own battles on the homefront. His wife, Moira, was struggling with alcoholism and was unwilling to admit her problem. Faced with the loss of her family, she finally pursued the help she needed and moved toward recovery.
While attending an AA meeting at St. Michael’s Church on the North Side of Chicago, a woman walked up to Moira one day and told her, “My dear, you need to become a Catholic. You need to convert.” Moira’s mother had been Catholic, but they didn’t practice the religion when she was growing up. As Moira explored the Catholic faith, she decided this was a step she wanted to take.
Moira converted, and she and Gary began sending their kids to Catholic school and attending Mass together as a family. Gary himself had not yet joined the Church, but he had become more open to God and the spiritual part of life due to various experiences in recent years.Then came 9/11.
Gary recalled the devastation he felt at the loss of life that occurred that day. He and his family went to their church for a memorial Mass that Friday. He said, “I remember feeling with this broken heart that I had – crying through the Mass – that service would heal that broken heart, service to others was a great healer…I wanted to do everything I could for the Afghanistan and Iraq veterans who were deploying in reaction to that terrible event…I started going to the war zones, to hospitals, entertaining on military bases across the country and around the world. I started raising money for multiple military charities, all as a volunteer. All while I was shooting a television show (CSI:NY) and trying to be a dad. And I found that the more I gave, the more relief I received – the relief of this broken heart because I could see that I was doing some good. Was it God calling me to service? It very well could be….This is a life mission.”