|Source: Wikimedia Commons|
St. Francis Xavier Church is located in downtown Cincinnati, and it has been serving Catholics in the downtown area since 1845. The present building, with its ornate clock tower, was built in 1860 and is on the National Register of Historic Places.
What is interesting to me about the church is something I learned through my A-Z research. Francis Finn, an author whose books are still available today, was one of the priests affiliated with the church back in the late 1800s and early 1900s.
Finn was a Jesuit priest, and he wrote the book Tom Playfair while suffering from insomnia. He decided to spend two of his sleepless hours each night writing, and ultimately produced the story about a boy at a Catholic boarding school.
Tom Playfair was published in 1893, and was an immediate success among school children. Finn went on to write 26 more books, with more school boy characters such as Percy Winn and Harry Dee, and all of his works were translated into numerous languages and published all over the world.
I'd never heard of Finn or his books before starting this Challenge, but it was interesting to me to learn about this little bit of Cincinnati literary history. And, because I struggle with insomnia quite often, I was inspired by the fact that Finn wrote his book during a spell of insomnia himself. That's something to remember the next time I have some sleepless nights.
Most of all, I loved this quote from Finn: "One of the greatest things in the world is to get the right book into the hands of the right boy or girl."
As someone who has loved reading since I was a girl, I could not agree more.