down to business tying flies or heading to the water for some fly-fishing. On a June day that had a forecast for rain, the group finishes lunch

and gathers at tables while Darwin Adams from the local Trout Unlimited chapter sets up a sophisticated camera donated by a Holy Cross member. Using the camera and a large monitor, Adams walks the veterans through a fly-tying lesson. The engagement in the room is captivating as many of the veterans

who were quiet and uneasy at first now smile and open up as they work on making their flies. For those who have prosthetic limbs, local fly fishermen made devices that use magnets to help them tie flies. One of the veterans, Glenn Cook, has come since the program started.

Although he prefers regular fishing to fly-fishing, he enjoys the program’s community aspect: “It’s nice to come here and meet people.” Donning a Project Healing Waters cap with a fly in it, veteran Darnell

Jones focuses on creating a new fly. “I first started coming because I heard they had good food,” he quipped, “but now I come because it’s fun to get out and I’ve made friends here.” He nodded toward Kuceyeski. Jones appreciates the community at the congregation and the

conversations they have, saying he’s “more religious” than he used to be in his younger days. “I’m not an experienced fisherman, no, no, but I’m learning how to

do it and I’m learning how to tie flies—I’ve tied five so far,” he said, as he pulled out a small silver box with a photo on top. He uses the box, given to him and the other veterans as Christmas gifts from Holy Cross, to store his completed flies. “It usually takes me about a half hour to tie one,” Jones said.

“I just like coming and getting to enjoy everyone’s company.” It just goes to show that, for this group, time flies when

you’re tying flies.

Glen Cook, a veteran who lives at Lovell, has been coming to the Project Healing Waters gatherings at Holy Cross since they started last year. He said his biggest catch so far is a 5-inch bluegill.

Jonah Berg-Ganzarain is a summer intern with ELCA Strategic Communications. He attends Bentley University in Waltham, Mass.

28 AUGUST 2017

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