Last Friday, I celebrated the funeral Mass for Father Larry Pashak, Pastor of St. Agnes Parish in Freeland, who served the people of the Diocese of Saginaw as a priest for 47 years.
Father Larry was among the first priests of the Diocese of Saginaw whom I got to know after arriving here as Bishop in 2009. I especially looked forward to his generous hospitality when I would go to St. Agnes Church to celebrate the monthly diocesan youth Mass, Feed the Fire. He also was very devoted to our seminarians and hosted a cookout for them in the summer.
I am grateful to God for giving me the chance to sit down and spend time with Father Larry on the previous Friday - a week ago; the day before he died. He had indicated to me recently that he was considering retirement and we met in my office to discuss his plans. We talked a lot about his priesthood and the many ways he served the Diocese of Saginaw. All along the way, I expressed my deep gratitude for all he has done to serve the Lord and the People of God here in this diocese. I could not have thanked him enough.
On Friday, Father Larry's family said goodbye to a good brother and a good uncle. The people of St. Agnes Parish said goodbye to a good pastor. The priests of the Diocese of Saginaw said goodbye a beloved brother. And we all said goodbye to a dear friend.
May he rest in peace.