Monday, May 25, 2015

Patrick McGuigan: Oklahoma's Dean Of Journalism

  Perhaps the journalistic calling has no more devout Oklahoma practitioner than Patrick McGuigan. The man has known the heights of his achievements and the despair of separation from a means of communicating with the fellow Oklahomans he loves and serves. Making a living in journalism can be difficult.
 This Spring, 'professor' McGuigan was inducted into the Oklahoma Journalism Hall of Fame.
 To honor Patrick McGuigan, I decided to call your attention to the core passion that drives him.
With his indulgence, here is his message to Oklahoma and his fellow journalists; delivered at his induction:
  "I saw Him last summer at Lake Hefner, when our Jewish community prayed for three young men, children of Abraham murdered in another spurt of violence aimed at the nation and people of Israel. We followed Rabbi Vered Harris that day, who also prayed for a young Arab Muslim who had been killed.

  I felt the Father (Abba) when the Chabad Community Center and “my” rabbi, Ovadia Goldman, lit the Menorah in Bricktown on the first night of the Festival of Lights, lifting communal petitions to a loving God.

  I remember Him in four men who supported me in reporting the truth as I saw it at varied times in my career in journalism: Paul Weyrich, Edward L. Gaylord, Brandon Dutcher, Bob Lemon. I had My Lord’s counsel, from reporters and colleagues over the many years after I discovered that I had the soul of a reporter.

  I saw Him during a fundraiser at Church of the Open Arms, benefiting the Food Pantry where the poor “shop” for necessities. … His message arose in a Vespers service from Oklahoma City University.

  I saw Him in the life of John Paul the Great. I hear Him in JP II’s successors. I understand Him in the words of St. Francis: “Preach the Gospel, using words if necessary.” I experience Him when Our Lady’s Cathedral Choir raises united voices for Sacred Liturgies, year after year. I felt Him, sitting in a pew at Olivet Baptist, as Steve Kern sang a love song to his wife.

I know Him, in the breaking of the bread, in the cuddle of a grandchild, in the students and staff at Justice Alma Wilson Seeworth Academy.
"I do not profess to understand every moment when I met Jesus, along the way. With age has come the certainty that I have entertained Angels, unaware" 

  I do not profess to understand every moment when I met Jesus, along the way. With age has come the certainty that I have entertained Angels, unaware (Hebrews 13:2). As St. Paul said, I saw through a glass darkly (1 Corinthians 13:12), and one day shall see my God, face to face. Truth is immutable, yes, but our experience of it is colored by personality, disposition, the totality of a given moment of vulnerability, or anger, or intellectual acuity.

  I serve Him, receiving the love of friends, my dear children – Josef, Stefan, Erin and Andy – and grandchildren, and the blessings of my beloved spouse, Pamela. He is there in the moments of love, and even in times of hate. Usually just outside the realm of sight, but sometimes right in front of me. As my Savior said, I only need eyes to see, and ears to hear (Matthew 11:15; 13:9)

And, to be sure, a heart to believe. May it be so.
  My friends here present and those who shall read my words of petition: Persevere in our noble mission, witnessing to truth, and never bearing false witness."

The City Sentinel is a weekly, legal newspaper serving Downtown,
Central and Northwest Oklahoma City.  For hard-copy subscriptions,
mailed to your home or business inside Oklahoma County
@ $10.00 per year, you can click here, or mail a check to:
The City Sentinel,
PO BOX 60876,
Oklahoma City, OK 73102
Please be clear on the address you would like the paper mailed.
Call the subscription desk, (405) 605-6062, to get the City
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Editor's note:  This weekend I spent some days in Oklahoma City and I picked up a copy of The City Sentinel (Pat McGuigan's effort as a print publisher in his own right), and I quickly discovered Pat's way of making Oklahoma's largest metropolis seem like a simple town using his newspaper to communicate with common mutual respect for every citizen, as if we all lived in the same neighborhood and attended the same PTA meetings.
  Please consider sending a contribution to support the Save The City Sentinel newspaper campaign fund. We face daily challenges as we work to sustain independent print journalism in the heart of Oklahoma City. Any contributions will go directly to sustain our print and online news operations.  Visit

David Van Risseghem

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