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Patriot Priest tells one man’s personal experience over several epochs and areas of history. It is also, in part the story of one unique individual, author Patricia Daly-Lipe’s great uncle, Msgr. William A Hemmick. Born in Pittsburgh, PA, and raised in Europe, he became fluent in five languages. When the First World War broke out, he felt committed to help the troops. After the war, he was proclaimed the Patriot Priest of Picardy by the Army and Navy. After years spent in Paris, William Hemmick was asked by the Vatican to come to Rome. Ultimately he became the only American Canon of St. Peter’s representing the Knights of Malta to the Holy See.
It was he who performed the nuptials of American film star Tyrone Power and Linda Christian. He also converted the future Queen Astrid of Belgium.
Enjoy this excerpt:
Only a few months after entering the American College, William became quite ill. Physicians were called. After checking the boy carefully, they proceeded to give him sad news. William had contracted tuberculosis of the most virulent sort and could not expect to live more than a couple of months. Of course, he wanted to leave for home immediately.
The Rector, Dr. Kennedy, arranged, however, that he should have an audience with the Holy Father (Pope Pius X) before he left. Dr. Kennedy himself took young William to the Vatican and, having first told the Pope in private of the circumstances of the case, the student was ushered into the Pope’s chambers.
The Pope smiled at him tenderly as the young man knelt to kiss the papal ring. Then he lifted his chin, looked him straight in the eye and, very reassuringly, advised the young man, “Don’t worry at all now.”
William looked up at the Pope’s smiling face in disbelief.
“You are going to be all right. Go home and get rested and well.”
Then the Pope placed his hand on William’s head and said, “One day you will be back here.”
The ailing young seminarian would not have dared to hope at that moment the Holy Father was speaking the truth. However, he was.
Soon after he returned to America, William’s health improved. Although his convalescence was long, he was finally able to resume his priestly studies at Mt. St. Mary’s College in Emmitsburg, Maryland, followed by six years at Catholic University in Washington, DC.
About the Author:
Dr. Patricia Daly-Lipe, is an Author and Artist. She has written six books, all different genres. She is winner of the San Diego Book Awards, Best Books Finalist, the JADA Novel Contest, USABookNews.com Finalist, 2009 2nd place in poetry by the Virginia Writers Club, Inc, and 2013 winner in historical fiction at the Annual Royal Dragonfly Book Awards for ‘A CRUEL CALM, Paris Between the Wars and 2013 winner for her short story by the Virfginia Writers Assn.
Although born in La Jolla, California, Patricia spent equal time in Washington, D.C., home of several generations of her mother’s family.
She has taught at colleges and writing centers, written for magazines and newspapers (including the Evening Star in Washington, DC, La Jolla Village News, The Georgetowner andUptowner), and her paintings have been accepted and sold in Juried shows, art galleries, and private homes. Two of her books feature her paintings on their covers.
Patricia served as President of both the La Jolla and DC Branches of the National League of American Pen Women.
Patricia now lives in Virginia with her husband, Dr. Steele Lipe, three dogs, three horses, and two cats. For years, Patricia raised, raced, and showed Thoroughbred horses. Now she rescues them. She is the mother of three and grandmother of six children.
Buy the book at Amazon.