Prayers for Mr. Mark Craddock

Please join us in praying for longtime Marist School Band Director Mr. Mark Craddock as he courageously faces a terminal cancer diagnosis. Mr. Craddock does not meet this challenge alone. His colleagues, students, and all members of our school community are invited to lift Mr. Craddock up into the care of our Lord and provide him spiritual support and companionship during this most difficult time of his life’s journey.  
The Marist School community gathered this morning, Monday, May 22, for a prayer service in Young Gym in Centennial Center to share messages of prayer and strength for Mr. Craddock and provide support for one another. Mr. Craddock’s illness came on suddenly in recent weeks and has progressed swiftly. Unfortunately, he will not be able to return to his teaching duties at Marist, and that is heartbreaking for all of us.

Handwritten notes were collected at the prayer service, and our community near and far are encouraged to share an email  or record a video message for Mr. Craddock. Cards and notes can also be dropped off at Marist’s front office or in Campus Ministry.

At this morning's prayer service, Marist School President Fr. Bill Rowland, S.M. shared that Mr. Craddock’s “primary concern is for all of us, and especially his students and former students who will be especially saddened to receive this news. He has said repeatedly that he does not want us to be dominated by sadness at his passing. Instead, he asks that we follow his lead and accept that this is God’s will, that all will work out for the best, and that he is going to a wonderful place where he will be at peace and joy reigns supreme. Rather than being sad for him, he wants us to be happy for him. While recognizing he and we will shed tears of sadness that come with saying thank you and goodbye, he would prefer that they eventually include tears of joy for him.”

Fr. Rowland guides us through our grief with these words, “This morning, we gather to thank God for the gift that Mr. Craddock has been to so many students, alumni, parents, and colleagues. We acknowledge that we will miss him and wish things could be different. We pray for the grace to bear the sadness of this news and be comforted by the faith we share. We pray for each other as we stand with Mary at the foot of this cross. We turn to her and pray for the grace of a happy death for Mr. Craddock, using these words with which we are all familiar: Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death. Amen.”

If any students, faculty, or staff need support during this time, the Marist counselors and campus ministers are available. Marist alumni may reach out to Fr. Mark Kenney, S.M. for pastoral care.

As we walk alongside Mr. Craddock on the path that God has laid before him, let us pray.

Father, we come to you in the name of your son, Jesus. In his word He said in Matthew 18:19: "Again, I tell you, if two or more of you join your voices on earth to pray for anything whatever, it shall be granted to you by my Father in Heaven."

“May the roads rise up to meet you,
May the winds be always at your back,
May the sun shine warm upon your face,
May the rains fall soft upon fields
And until we meet again
May God hold you in the palm of his hand.
May you see God’s light on the path ahead
When the road you walk is dark. 
May you always hear,
Even in your hour of sorrow,
The gentle singing of the lark. 
When times are hard may hardness 
Never turn your heart to stone,
May you always remember
when the shadows fall – 
You do not walk alone.”

Mary, Seat of Wisdom, pray for us.

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Marist School

3790 Ashford Dunwoody Road, NE
Atlanta, GA 30319-1899
(770) 457-7201
An Independent Catholic School of the Marist Fathers and Brothers