Thankful for church leadership

To the Editor: At a time of year when many people reflect about the blessings that have been bestowed on them, I am writing to express my appreciation to and admiration for the wonderful priests whom I have known through the years. In my youth, I attended St. Joseph's Church in Dannemora. Msgr. Landry, Msgr. Collins, Msgr. Kelly, Msgr. LaValley and the Rev. Dan Keefe were priests whom I will never forget. When I attended St. Michael's College, the Edmundite Fathers were a wonderful group of men who were dedicated to imparting the wisdom of the ages and their faith to their students. Since 1974, my wife Jean and I have been parishioners at St. Augustine's Parish. Over the years, we have been blessed by the presence of pastors Msgr. Francis White, the Rev. Clyde Lewis, Msgr. Peter Riani, the Rev. Vicente Jazmines, the Rev. Alan Shnob, as well as several wonderful associate pastors and resident priests. Everyone has their own strengths and weaknesses, but the priests I have known have all possessed the most important quality an overwhelming faith in Jesus Christ. The image of the priesthood has been damaged in the past several years. Even so, my experience tells me that the overwhelming majority of priests are holy men who love their God, his church and the people with whom they worship. John T. Ryan

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