Blessed Bloomers XX
Dedicated to Father Christopher Keenan, OFM
through December 2021
Irish immigrants from County Leitrim came to Brooklyn, NY where their son, Franciscan priest Father Mychal F. Judge was born Robert Emmet Judge in 1933.
Irish immigrants from County Galway and County Roscommon met and married in Wood-Ridge, NJ where their son, Franciscan priest Father Christopher B. Keenan was born John Drury Keenan in 1942.
The two sons of Irish immigrants would both answer, “yes” to their vocations, would both become Franciscan friars, then priests of Holy Name Province. They’d become lifelong friends of 38 years who would both work with the homeless and poor and eventually would both become FDNY Chaplains, one following in the footsteps of the other. Interestingly, both would be considered “bridges,” a bridge between people and God, a bridge that connects people with resources, and also a bridge of ministry with people, not necessarily to people. Both friars were joyful and humble, and they preferred to focus on those they served rather than on themselves.
Jokingly, Father Chris says that “Mychal Judge got me into this business, and now he’s giving me the business,” referring to the moment Father Mychal encouraged him to become a friar. “If I can do this, you can,” he told Father Chris. Father Mychal and Father Benedict Taylor, both now deceased, were the inspiring friars who helped Father Chris realize his vocation to the Franciscans and to the priesthood. Father Chris entered the Order of Friars Minor in 1964 and professed his first vows a year later. He made his final vows in 1969 and was ordained a priest in 1971. This year marks his 50th anniversary as a Franciscan priest.
This year also marks the 20th anniversary of the inception of Mychal’s Message, a ministry that has now become a bridge that brought Father Chris to us and us to Father Chris, a bridge that connects the donations of others with those who need them most. Father Chris now serves as a Spiritual Advisor to Mychal’s Message and has offered tremendous support to us over these past 20 years. And so, it is quite fitting that our 20th anniversary collection of Blessed Bloomers be dedicated to Father Christopher Keenan to celebrate his 50th anniversary to the priesthood and his dedication to the homeless and poor. “Thank you for the gift of your life to mine,” Father Chris tells us often. And now, we say, “Thank you for the gift of your life to ours,” Father Chris.
How You Can Help
Your tax-deductible donation of $20 will allow us to provide new underwear, T-shirts and socks to a man, woman or child in need.
If you’d prefer, you may also mail new underwear and socks directly to Mychal’s Message. Greatest need is for men’s boxers. PLEASE NOTE: If you are sending donated items via UPS, FEDEX or from Amazon, please contact us for a street address.
Donations by check should be mailed to:
P.O. Box 6404
Lancaster, PA 17607
Online donations are accepted through Network for Good.
Please click the button below and specify "Socks for the Homeless" in the "Designation" line on the Network for Good website.