I am not a Catholic, but you don't need to be one to love Father Perry Kavookjian.
The outpouring of love for him was unprecedented during a reception in honor of the local priest's departure for a three-month sabbatical in Rome. Parishioners and community citizens stood in long lines just to give Father Perry a hug and wishes for a safe journey. They just kept coming until there was only standing room in the unfinished Newman Center facility.
A number of years ago, I was fortunate to travel with Father Perry to Cuba and observed first-hand his sense of joy in his calling, love for all and his infectious smile. He is living each day grateful in word and deeds serving his Fresno family, who truly love this man of God.
It's hard to believe this good man has been part of this community for 20 years. May there be many more to come. God speed, Father Perry, and have a safe and fulfilling journey of faith in the goodness of all the children of God.
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Raymond F. Ensher