A strong family makes a strong Senator

We can praise the many significant contributions made by Senator Brian Harradine, who died yesterday, but what we should celebrate most is his contribution as a devoted family man.

He and his first wife Barbara had six children.  Two years after she died in 1980 he married Marian, a widow with seven children.  When he retired there were 31 grandchildren.

What a remarkable story, and one I would love to know more about.  The newspaper headlines trumpet the Senator’s “staunch conservatism”, his wily negotiating skills and his strong stand on human rights and championing the cause of our most vulnerable.  But wouldn’t it be great if we saw a full page feature story about his most important role, and his greatest legacy – his role as a husband and father.

We need to celebrate more our families.  For Senator Brian Harradine, no doubt it was a strong family – and strong faith – that made a strong Senator.