I spoke about Msgr. George Thompson at all Masses this weekend. Here is an outline of my talk:
I wish to speak to you about Msgr. George Thompson.
Msgr. Thompson was away this summer for most of July-August and September.
When he returned, we knew something was wrong. He was exhibiting memory issues. He was confused. He could no longer even say Mass. It happened so quickly! We decided to:
- Ask him for his car keys
- Take him for medical testing
- Ask the assistance of our Vicar for Clergy, Bishop Walsh, and our Priest Wellness Coordinator, Deacon DiMartino.
Msgr. received a very difficult diagnosis – he did ask us not to share it – but it has to do with short term memory. Bishop Walsh and Deacon DiMartino met with Msgr. and recommended that he move to our St. John Vianney Clergy Center in Riverdale – where a section is devoted to priests with memory issues. Msgr. asked if he could stay at St. Columba until after Christmas, and his wish was respected.
Yesterday (Friday), he made the move to Riverdale where he will receive excellent care. His new address will be available in next week’s bulletin if you would like to send him a card.
I would like to thank our entire parish staff – most especially Gary Bartilucci, Laura Brady and Father Connolly for helping to give him excellent care, and our own Ministry of Care that helped us with doctor visits.
Msgr. Thompson is one of our finest priests, and we are going to miss him very much. Personally, he is a dear friend and a mentor. Please continue to pray for him.