Fr. Bernie was my my Dad’s priestly brother. From his kitchen window in the rectory he could see the front door of the parochial school that was on the other side of the driveway. His church was in a rough part of town. I had dropped by to see if he was in the mood to play cards.
That Saturday afternoon Fr Bernie looked out the window to see two guys pissing in the door way of the school. He got a plastic bucket, filled it with water and walked up to the two guys. He said, “Gentlemen, kids will be using this door come Monday morning. Do you mind moving on?” They quietly picked up their beers and wandered away. Fr. Bernie took the bucket of water and splashed the door way clean.
What a shining example of how to live. Stay calm. Stand up for yourself. Be respectful. Don’t argue with drunks. Do what has to be done. Joni Mitchell sang about it too- You know the times you impress me most/ Are the times when you don’t try.
As we walked back into the rectory Fr Bernie asked, “Ready to get beaten in pinochle, Tony?”
Tony Toledo April 5, 2016