Summary Of A Father's Story By Andre Dubus

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“A Father’s Story”, a short story written by Andre Dubus, is an extremely interesting an insightful look into Catholic literature of the modern day. Dubus uses the medium of Catholicism to deliver a story that is both captivating in its action, while also being reaffirming in its attempt to contemplate both belief and faith in God in a man who leads an existence that is seemingly black-and-white and adrift. Through the presence of God and the main character’s struggle with his Catholic religion however, the life that appears to be, isn’t in fact all that is, and as long as he still retains and balances his faith with his love and fatherly duties, new meaning is given to being a Catholic in the modern day. The main character of the story, Luke …show more content…

He lives alone, tends to his own “flock” of horses, and the rest of his time is devoted to his Catholic identity and belief. He meets consistently with the priest of his local church and they are even friends, conferring each other on matters of religion and of everyday things as well. But still, he lives in a grieving state, listening to opera and thinking on his life, stuck in sort of a contemplative limbo of his mistakes and who he is as a Catholic man. However, as the story progresses, the reader learns more of the events leading up to the state that Ripley is in. His wife and children have left him and the church after tough times between the two trying to balance their Catholic identity with the stresses of a family and their own needs. This reveals the underpinnings of the struggles that Ripley will eventually go through. The trials of a family split up and a man who has sinned and seeks to repent in solitude reveals that, no matter the high standards he sets for himself as a devout Catholic and the strong convictions he holds, Luke Ripley must continually act against them from time to time out of …show more content…

There are constantly trials to one’s faith and those trials will make the connection to God ever stronger and present, but there are also times where despite one’s religious convictions, sometimes the realization that no one can be a perfect Catholic can be the biggest achievement of all. Andre Dubus reveals in this story that running from one’s own failings as a Catholic is just denial and that perhaps what Luke Ripley did in the closing statements of the story is the bravest thing one can do. He understands he is just a man and that man inherently has his failings. But he will not admit that covering for his daughter is one of those failings because the bond between father and daughter is one that not even God has had experience with. Luke Ripley’s life is his own and it may not be a perfect life, but it is his and he must work with what he has been dealt. He may have failed the tests of God, but he passed the test of a father and will live with his biggest sin without regret. It is through this conclusion of the story that reveals the most about the Catholic identity. Being religious is hard and being a Catholic is hard. It is impossible to be a perfect Catholic, but to have that

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