Bob McPhail, editor of California Catholic Daily, passed away on November 16 after long illnesses.
Before he began as the editor at the inception of Cal Catholic in 2007, McPhail was editor of La Cruz de California, a Spanish-language monthly distributed from 1998 through 2006 in northern Baja California and in Catholic churches in Southern California.
McPhail wrote for the San Diego Reader from 1987 through 2018.
His remains will be interred in Tijuana.
Excerpts from his personal stories at the Reader:
While other kids were out on the ball field, I withdrew to contemplate my sins in a dimly lit chapel that smelled of incense and candles. Unlike those whose religious beliefs add spiritual peace to their lives, I found that mine did nothing to assist me in accepting myself or winning the acceptance of others. And as far as my peers were concerned, my condition had worsened. Not only was I fat, I was fat and religious. Not a winning combination with which to enter adolescence.
I observed the narrow boundary between life and death when the spirit left my father from his bed in an army hospital last winter. One moment he was with us; the next he was gone. For those few moments, life and death merged. For a short while, each resembled the other. This amorphous condition lasts beyond the collapse of respiration, the stilling of the heart, or the shutdown of the brain. Lifelike qualities persist, as if a flame were being slowly extinguished. When the fire is out, the transition is complete. That is when the ancients say the spirit leaves the body. That is when my dad died.
(From “What becomes of San Diego County’s 20,000 fetuses every year?”)
My illnesses seemed endless — kidney stones, urinary tract infections, postsurgical blood clots that traveled to my lungs, the need to breathe pure oxygen 24 hours a day — and, on several occasions, I was ready to throw in the towel and let God take me, by passive suicide, by doing nothing. At least I would be able to prepare myself for judgment before I died. I figured that might be preferable to a sudden, unexpected death, during which I would die more likely than not in mortal sin, with really bad prospects for eternity. But I was able to endure, thanks to the good counsel of friends who shared my faith, who helped me put my suffering into perspective, to see that it had meaning and purpose. Most of all, that it was important and beneficial.
The contrast between this guy’s life and the lives of Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos, Bill Gates, John Kerry, Hunter Biden, Joe Biden, Nancy Pelosi, make one begin to suspect that religion is a false belief system. Claiming that suffering has meaning in God’s plan is the way to keep you in the belief system. Meanwhile, atheists and fake Catholics party on.
On the contrary, it’s just the opposite. The contrast between Mr. McPhail’s life and the life of those mentioned gives credence to religion.
Making the claim that suffering has meaning in God’s plan is doing nothing other than expounding a known truth. It is a true statement, and no disbelief of any person can alter the truth of it.
God is all-good and omniscient. He knows the ultimate fate of every person, so sometimes people are given a superabundance in this life because Our Lord has foreknowledge that they will opt against Him and for eternal damnation in the next. That’s why so many wicked people are also very wealthy, e.g., all the pro-abortion millionaires and billionaires.
God gives them so many good things in this life because they won’t choose to have good things in eternity. Like all of us, it is ultimately their choice. God forces no one into Heaven.
May he Rest In Peace, and may his friends , family, and colleagues find solace in the Lord
Thank you to Bob McPhail for all of these years bringing attention to important issues in The Church, especially in our region. I will remember him in the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass. Rest in Peace
A true warrior for the faith, in so many ways, and a trusted advisor. Rest in peace, Bob, and pray for us!
May Bob rest in the loving arms of Our Lord for eternity.
Eternal memory! Bob will be an intention at the altar at Divine Liturgy this Sunday.
O God of all spiritual and corporeal beings, You trampled death, broke the power of Satan and granted life to the whole world.
Now, O Lord, grant also rest to the soul of Your departed servant Robert in a place of light, refreshment, and peace, where there is no pain, sorrow, or mourning.
As a gracious God and loving mankind, forgive every transgression committed by him in word, deed, or thought, since there is no man alive who has not sinned. You alone are without sin and Your justice is everlasting justice, and Your word is always truth.
For You are the resurrection, the life and the rest of Your departed servant Robert, O Christ our God, and we render glory to You, together with Your Eternal
Father, and Your most Holy, gracious, and life-giving Spirit, now and ever and forever. Amen.
Eternal rest grant unto him, O Lord,
and let perpetual light shine upon him.
May he rest in peace.
Also, my condolences to his family and those who cared about and for him.
Our Lady of Pity, obtain peace for them. Amen.
Amen to all the above expressions of sympathy and support. Bob McPhail, you have given purpose and meaning to my life, for which I offer my poor prayers for the repose of your soul. And kindly pray for me, you warrior of God!
May Bob Mc Phail’s soul, through the mercy of God, rest in peace. May the angels carry him to paradise. It sounds as if he has suffered enough.
If you click on the dates, you can read his writing. I hope he has happiness now that he has gone. Really sad. I feel bad. You never know what someone is suffering.
God bless Bob McPhail. May the angels carry him to our loving God.
+Requiem aeternam dona ei Domine, et lux perpetua luceat ei. Requiescat in pace.+
Indeed, may Bob rest in peace. He and Jim Holman have done great things in and for the Faith, from effective pro-life support, to affirming and celebrating those who honor the Lord in their daily lives, to exposing those who betray the Faith from within or attack it from without — and in so many other ways.
Cal Catholic readers will miss you, Bob. I hadn’t known of your multitude of medical problems, borne with strength, grace, and resolve. May we readers lead lives which earn the opportunity to meet you in person, in the glory of Heaven. I’ve transmitted a donation in your honor.
May he find solace and peace in the hands of our Lord.