Family and faith

“I’m thinking about leaving my job,” the young man told his father. “I’m not passionate about it. I’m supposed to be doing something else.  It’s not anything I’m going to jump into, but I think I’m supposed to be doing something else.”

The above conversation, recounted in the book The Ice Bucket Challenge by Pete Frates ’07, took place only months before he was diagnosed with the terminal disease ALS. As John Frates puts it, his son did not have a plan, but what he did have was a hunch.  

Neither of them could ever have imagined what that “something else” would turn out to be.

Now, John Frates and his wife Nancy – both 1980 graduates of Boston College – will share their family’s story with the University community and discuss the events that led to the largest viral sensation in history, the Ice Bucket Challenge. 

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Flyer for the Christmas Agape Latte event on Dec. 5.

The couple are the featured speakers at this year’s Christmas Agape Latte on Dec. 5 at the Hillside Café in Maloney Hall. Sponsored by the Church for the 21st Century Center and Campus Ministry, Agape Latte is a monthly event designed for students seeking to learn more about faith and religion in an inviting social environment. 

High school sweethearts whose romance continued through and well beyond college, Nancy and John will talk about their journey from the Heights, enduring friendships, family, Pete’s ALS diagnosis, the impact of the Ice Bucket Challenge – and, most of all, the constant presence of God as a companion in their lives.

“The Agape Latte stories aren’t always wrapped in a Christmas theme, but they are always powerful and help students students see God working,” said C21 Center Associate Director Karen Kiefer. “We are so grateful that John and Nancy agreed to share their family story with our students, especially during this season of miracles.  Their lives are defined by hope, peace, joy and love and they truly are gifts that keep giving.”

Prior to the Frates’ talk at 8:30 p.m., the event will feature live musical performances beginning at 7:45 p.m. and trivia at 8:25 p.m.  There will also be Christmas t-shirt giveaways throughout the night, along with Christmas desserts and lattes. 

The event will be livestreamed via the Agape Latte Facebook page [facebook.com/AgapeLatte]. For more information, e-mail agapelatte@bc.edu.

–Siobhan Sullivan / University Communications