When people ask me what was my own favorite blog, it’s hard, but i always end up with my FRANCOBOLLI with the ROLLING R, about my miraculous experience in a post-office in Rome, Italy.

But i think it’s time for a FRANCOBOLLI II, this one about my precious Mother. My mom is the easiest person to please. Whenever it’s time to get her a gift for some occasion, she’ll beat me to it. In anticipation she’ll call and say, “All I Want, All I Need is Francobolli!” Of course, she can really wreck Italian!! Ha Ha! And that one, my favorite Italian word, means Postage Stamps! She may not be able to roll her r’s, but this little lady knows what she wants. She’ll even add, “Fancy stamps, preferably flowers or birds!”

And my Mother is the Master of the Ancient, Long-Forgotten, Sacred  Art of Letter-Writing!

She’ll say it loud n clear; she’ll say it over and over. “I don’t tweet, I don’t text, I don’t FB, I don’t E, and I sure don’t Insta!! No, I like to take my time and fill it with alot of Love and Tenderness, so Letters Are the Best!!!”

She has been writing them to me, almost every week, for almost 50 years. i tried and tried to keep up with her, but she’s a true marathoner. In time i surrendered to the easier sprints, and she left me, heck, she left us all in the dust…..but faithful “FOREVER,” as the American francobolli say it.

It would not surprise me if my mother still has every letter she ever received, so much does she treasure every note and every sender. She’s even got a few tucked away from some V.I.P.’s, but to my Mother – and this is the Number One reason why she writes – each and every person MUST KNOW and be REMINDED how VERY IMPORTANT he or she (and she’s even written to our pets!!!), ALL SO PRECIOUS TO HER. She especially adores the mailmen – as they do her. Walt Kruzienski, mailman of the century, is grateful for her revenue; not one of those confounded price hikes ever slowed her down. And her vision of mailmen as archangels never once faded.

She loved her dear husband from the day they met til the day God took him home (and loves him still). She watched eight little robins hatch and grow, then fly away (and she loves and cares for them still). But Letter-Writing, now that has been one of her Godly Missions in this world, for this whole world, throughout her life. There couldn’t possibly be a count of how many lives she has touched, boosted, bettered, made to know how VERY IMPORTANT they are.

If anyone deserves to have her face on a stamp, a francobollo, it is my dear Mother. Hey! i think i’ll make one for her. On the bottom, of course, the USPS will already write Forever. But over this picture, at the orchid-covered table where she’s written thousands, i would add one word. Interestingly, the great saint Mother Teresa always said that “In the end it will not matter how much money you had or how many cars or houses, how pretty your face remained or whether you were famous. All that matters is how FAITHFUL you were.”


So, my sweet momma, francobollist extraordinaire, FAITHFUL FOREVER.


Author: friardad

what's it like having a wife and six kids after having been a friar for many years and being still married to St. Francis' Lady Poverty?

5 thoughts on “FRANCOBOLLI II”

  1. I finally had a moment to read this and I absolutely loved reading about your “our”. Mom…. I haven’t sent her a letter for awhile but just yesterday sat down and wrote to her . It is a lost art due to the time that’s invested in it ….in a world that goes too fast….to me there is nothing more satisfying than sitting in my kitchen writing or reading a letter…… Thank you Michael for sharing her with me ❤️


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