Dear the NPH Family,
It is with profound sadness that I share with you the news of Michael Maccoby’s passing on the morning of November 5th, a day after the third anniversary of the passing of his beloved wife, Sandylee.
Michael became friends with Fr. Wasson in 1964, ten years after Fr. Wasson had started his NPH Family. Michael, together with Eric Fromm, studied peasant communities in the area of Cuernavaca. Dr. Fromm, who was impressed with Fr. Wasson’s work introduced Michael to Father Wasson and they quickly became very close friends. Over the years, Michael and his family generously contributed to the NPH Family, and Michael closely collaborated with Fr. Wasson, serving on the NPHI Leadership Council and Our Little Brothers and Sisters Board, and reviewing thousands of volunteer applications based on a questionnaire he had developed. As the Leadership Advisor for NPH International, he mentored youth and NPH leaders, often traveling to the various homes to be present for the children and youth. During our Youth Development Workshops, I noticed how strongly all Pequeños and Pequeñas gravitated towards Michael wherever they encountered him, and I realized how Michael had also become the last tangible presence of Father Wasson in their lives after his passing in 2006.
On a personal note, Michael and I developed a wonderful friendship over my 40 years with NPH. He was always there to talk, give advice and encouragement, lighten the mood with his wonderful humor, and also did not shy away from constructive criticism to keep me grounded. The first time I met him was in 1983 and we discussed the meaning of life and our goals in life. His goal in life was succinct: “To become wise and loving.” Note, that even at age 50, he said “to become”. One of Michael’s main interests was the development of the human person, including himself, at any stage of our lives. Michael leaves a tremendous legacy of wisdom and knowledge, but most of all of true friendship and unconditional love. While I will miss him terribly, I am also deeply grateful for the friendship and love we shared and I am looking forward to share his insights and wisdom especially with the younger generations and emerging leaders of our NPH Family. Michael’s legacy will live on through all of us.
If you are interested in finding out more about Michael and his relationship with NPH and the NPH Family, please find below resources to continue to explore this extraordinary relationship.