The rabbi sportswriter

I remember when Mitch Albom was just a sports columnist.

I mean, he was a good one. His columns for the Detroit Free Press got national ink and Albom became a regular guest on The Sports Reporters, an all-sports Meet the Press on ESPN.

Then Albom wrote Tuesdays With Morrie in 1997 and The Five People You Meet in Heaven in 2003 and became a publishing phenomenon.

He also became something of a spiritual self-help guru to the world.

Albom recently received an award from the Religion Communicators Council for his most recent book, Have a Little Faith, which recounts his writing of a eulogy for his hometown rabbi.

At the award ceremony, Albom took things a step further and offered a prayer.

It was a prayer for those who face despair.

That’s a long way from writing about the Lions’ latest loss.

He prays:

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Please help to clear despair from our hearts and see our way clear to the hope that exists as long as we take a breath, as long as we are here on your earth, as long as we believe in your mercy, your kindness,  your warmth.

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About those who are suffering and have lost loved ones, Albom asks of God:

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Show them that even when we lose people, they are still with us in our hearts, and that there is a world beyond this one, that we can hope and pray towards and look towards and is and always has been a beacon of light for our existence here on earth.

*****

No prayers for the Lions?

Here it is:

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Gary Stern

Gary Stern covered education in the Lower Hudson Valley for several years during the early 1990s. Now's he back on the beat. He believes that schools are one of the main reasons that people live around here and that educational issues -- from curriculum to financing -- are among the most challenging things that journalists can write about. He continues to be amazed by the complexity of educational jargon. Gary got his B.A. at SUNY Buffalo and his M.A. from the University of Missouri Journalism School (where his master's thesis was about the best ways to cover education). He lives in White Plains with his wife and two sons, who attend public schools.