9: Fr. Jamie Dennis, a Blind Priest Guiding the Faithful

Father Jamie Dennis stands at the altar during the St. Lucy Mass

On the way out of Jericho a blind man named Bartimaeus sat begging on the roadside. The Gospel of Mark tells us Jesus is passing by, and Bartimaeus cries out for Him to have pity. Jesus stops and asks him what he wants Jesus to do for him. 

“Master, I want to see,” he says. 

Jesus replies, “Go your way; your faith has saved you.” And he received his sight, and then followed Jesus. You can see with your eyes, yes, but you can also see with your mind, heart, and spirit. In this episode of Faith Full we meet Fr. Jamie Dennis, a Catholic priest who is blind, whose journey to helping others see the way to God has not always been easy. 

“Here is sort of the blunt truth and I’m not trying to put the Church in a negative light, I’m just stating a fact: the Church hasn’t always been good at dealing with people who are, quote unquote different. It’s difficult.”

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You can skip to a section from this episode:

Growing up while losing vision
On his path to the priesthood
On why the Latin Mass and Byzantine Liturgy are more accessible

Continue reading “9: Fr. Jamie Dennis, a Blind Priest Guiding the Faithful”

8: Blind Catholics Keeping the Faith in a Pandemic

Fr. Jamie distributes Communion

For some Catholics who are blind, the experience of the Mass can be very different than for sighted people. In normal times, it can be a tactile experience.

But not during the pandemic.

In Scripture, Jesus is recorded as saying where two or three are gathered together in His name, there He is in the midst of them. And that goes for times when the two or three need to be two or three meters apart for social distancing. As with many Catholics, those who are blind have found technology as a way to continue to express their faith even when so much of life is disrupted. Many are also helped by an organization in New York, the Xavier Society for the Blind, which for 120 years has kept coming Catholic and inspirational materials in Braille and audio formats.

We’ll learn more on this episode of Faith Full.

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(In this episode we hear from four people: Skip to Donna Slivoski, Roger Erpelding, Fr. Jamie Dennis, or Malachy Fallon)

Continue reading “8: Blind Catholics Keeping the Faith in a Pandemic”