Parish the Thought: An Inspirational Memoir of Growing Up Catholic in

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Simon and Schuster, Aug 16, 2011 - Biography & Autobiography - 288 pages
3 Reviews
In a warm and affectionate narrative that "transports readers back to a time before cable television, cell phones, and the Internet" (Atlanta Journal-Constitution), John Bernard Ruane paints a marvelous portrait of his Irish-Catholic boyhood on the southwest side of Chicago in the 1960s. Capturing all the details that perfectly evoke those bygone days for Catholics and baby boomers everywhere, Ruane recounts his formative years donning the navy-and-plaid school uniform of St. Bede's: the priests and nuns; bullies, best friends, and first loves; and most memorable teachers -- including the miniskirted blonde who inspired lust among the fifth-grade boys but was fired for protesting the Vietnam War. Here are stories from the heart of his hardworking, blue-collar family: the good times and bad; sibling rivalries; summers by the lake; delivering newspapers in the frigid Chicago winter; the fire that destroyed the family home; and the loss of their beloved mother to cancer. And here are priceless accounts of Ruane's days as an altar boy: from an embarrassing bell-ringing mishap, to serving a strict pastor who built a magnificent church but couldn't inspire Christian spirit, to the Heaven-sent guitar-playing priest who turned worship around for a generation of youth.
  

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Review: Parish the Thought: An Inspirational Memoir of Growing Up Catholic in the 1960s

User Review  - Shirley - Goodreads

This was an entertaining Memoir about a Catholic boy who grew up in 1960's Chicago. My brother was an alter boy in the 1970's, so I could connect with some of what he talked about. The story is not without its happy and sad moments. I would recommend it as a nostalgic look at the past. Read full review

Review: Parish the Thought: An Inspirational Memoir of Growing Up Catholic in the 1960s

User Review  - Goodreads

This was an entertaining Memoir about a Catholic boy who grew up in 1960's Chicago. My brother was an alter boy in the 1970's, so I could connect with some of what he talked about. The story is not without its happy and sad moments. I would recommend it as a nostalgic look at the past. Read full review

Contents

Two First Communion
8
Three The First Step
17
Five First Mass
32
Six A Blessed Singing Star
40
Seven The Bells Are Ringing
50
Nine An Early Happy Hour
62
Ten Sunday Mass
69
Eleven Miss Pasco
75
Seventeen The Good People
130
Eighteen Confirmation of Faith
136
Nineteen Hoop Days
147
Twenty First Love
158
Twentyone Enter Father Richard
170
Twentytwo Band of Bullies
177
Twentyfour Making Money
196
Twentysix Twentyseven The War Hits Home 212 Devoted Teachers
217

Twelve Thou Shall Not Fight
85
Thirteen Writing on the Wall
96
Fourteen Unblessed Act
105
Fifteen A Tragic Day
111
Sixteen The Seminarians
120
Thirty A Farewell to St Bedes
237
Thirtytwo Oak Forest Hospital
252
Thirtyfour Return to Church
266
Copyright

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About the author (2011)

John Bernard Ruane wrote for the Chicago Sun-Time for nearly a decade, the paper he first delivered as a boy.  He has also written five plays all produced in his home town of Chicago.  His short film Comedy on Rye won the Illinois FilmCam Award.  For the past fifteen year, he has owned an operated a marketing and communications company and coached youth sports.  He and his wife Charlotte recently celebrated his twenty-fifth wedding anniversary.  They have four children and reside in Roswell, Georgia.

 

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