I am Paul Robichaud, a Paulist Father and for the last eleven years I have been living with Parkinson's Disease. I had just returned from a great assignment as the American Rector of the ancient Church of Santa Susanna in Rome and pastor of the American community. I loved it and it was hard to leave. I also served as analyst on the Vatican for CBS News and had recently been a commentator on the death of Pope John Paul II and the election of Pope Benedict. I loved Rome but I had been trained as a an American church historian and wanted to continue working in history. I could not do this and be rector in Rome at the same time, so as my term ended I decided to return back to the United States.
I was sitting in my office in Washington DC when a visiting colleague pointed out to me that my left arm seems to have developed a small tremor. This would be the beginning of a journey I would take with Parkinson's . On Tuesday January 3rd I will begin a series of surgical procedures where two microchips will be placed in the frontal lobes of my brain and hopefully not only calm the tremor through electromagnetism but reduce the ever increasing dosage of medication I presently take.
I invite you to join me on this adventure of what I hope will bring healing. I hope to write about what happens to me and welcome your comments and prayers. To past parishioners, colleagues, family and friends knowing that many of you are praying for me means a great deal. I am here in New York City but through this journal I hope to keep you informed of what is happening to me. My hope is that this will give me many more years of quality of life. God bless you all.