Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Meet Fred H

A sixty-something man struggling with schizophrenia. His “grandmother” and “mother” and “landlord” are constantly giving him rules for him to abide to. Couches are not allowed in apartments, he says, nor is he allowed to sleep on a bed. His Sabbath is from Friday at noon until Sunday night, during which time he cannot buy anything nor can he ride public transportation.

In the past, he would refuse his medication and then he would go on a fast that would last months. His longest fast was no food and only the barest water for three months until he was hospitalized for kidney failure. Yet, despite the many crosses and his lower-than-monastic lifestyle, he is the gentlest, most friendly man you would meet.

He is not a rebel, nor is he angry about the rules of his life. Rather, he is the best example of humility and joy anyone could find.

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