Tuesday evening, we attended a presentation by Michael Pritchard. I had been under the impression that it would be a drug seminar. It wasn't, but I am still very glad we went.
Mr. Pritchard is a motivational speaker (and, yes, he throws in religion) and this talk was directed more at the teenagers in the audience but also at their parents. He's a comedian, very obviously, reminds me very much of John Goodman and Robin Williams (not on drugs). He can quote poetry (Kalil Gibran) and scripture, all at the drop of a hat and spoke without a script. He does voices and sound effects and mixes humor and funny stories with a very serious message: be kind to each other, don't talk trash, don't pick on others. You never know, the fat little girl you used to tease so mercilessly in 3rd grade may just turn out to be the ER doctor who sews up the big gash in your head 20 or 30 years later and she will remember you. Among the funny stories about his own kids and the kids he encounters were stories of working with Special Olympics and mentally disabled adults and how special these people really are (and how funny they can be and how loving). My favorite was the one about the adults he took to a Giants game and the usher who wouldn't show them to their seats until "a responsible adult showed up" and one of the guys turning to him and saying, "Hey, Mike. He thinks you're retarded, too." Very matter-of-fact.
We were able to talk to him afterwards and told him a little about Henry and he asked us to write to him and tell him the whole story and he told us he'd pray for us. Never having been much of a churchgoer until last year, I am always touched when somebody tells me that and I am working on a letter to him. I just discovered that brevity isn't my strong point anymore :-) so I need to keep editing.
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