Father Virgil's Message
Melissa Mainer didn’t know she was waiting on a millionaire when she served Benjamin Olewine III his order. He was just one of the “regulars” at the Peachtree Restaurant in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania where she worked attempting to keep the bills paid while studying her way toward a nursing degree.
After she commiserated with Benjamin about tuition payments, he told her he’d be happy to pay them. Incredulous and skeptical, she initially turned him down, but when he persisted, Melissa showed him her tuition statement, which he promptly took from her and paid. Featured on Steve Hartman’s “On the Road” series for CBS, Olewine confided, “I’m known as a big tipper.”
Now 92 Olewine has paid over $20,000.00 of Melissa’s bills for tuition, books and other college expenses and has offered to continue the payments if she decides to pursue and Master’s Degree, which she is seriously considering. As a registered nurse Melissa now works at Pinnacle-Health in Harrisburg, at the Spine, Bone and Joint Institute named after Olewine, who will leave behind a legacy of generous giving. According to Harrisburg Mayor Stephen Reed, “Benjamin Olewine is a much beloved and respected city father whose contributions to both business and civic life serve as inspiration for all citizens.”
Melissa said, “The most important part of the story is that he helped me, so I just want to help everyone else.” Jesus said, “Whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven; and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.” Due to the generosity of Mr. Olewine’s outreach to a waitress working her way through college, a debt was forgiven and the result is a woman who is eager to help others in whatever way she can.
This real life example of how sharing our blessings helps those in need shows us that helping some in need is contagious. The one who is helped then becomes willing to help someone else. Let us ask our God for the grace to willingly share our blessings with others.