An email from a friend


Here’s a little event that made my month… a nice little reflection if you don’t mind some symbolism:

After the 7 PM Ash Wednesday Mass, I announced that I’d be moving in to the new rectory and sleeping in there for the first time as of last night (night of Ash Wednesday). Around 30 adults and children helped me pack out of the condo (the converted tool shed I’ve been living in the last few years), and into the mansion (the new 3 bedroom house which finally went up two months ago).

By 10 PM we were finished. At 9:30 PM, Ken Karabanoff called me from INSIDE the Westbound train and asked if he could stop on the tracks by St. Michael’s in order to receive Ashes. He said he would be honking the train horn from farther away than usual, since he has to start slowing down miles and miles in advance. It was the first time I was happy to hear that obnoxious train horn, since it always blows only 60 yards from the condo and shakes everything around! The train pulled up and stopped about 30 yards from the Church, and Kenneth jumped out of the train, with another conductor. They pulled off their caps and asked for the ashes.

We then prayed an Our Father, and then they jumped back in the train, headed West. Sometimes I look for too much symbolism in things, but this is what crossed my mind: The first day of Lent… night time (symbol of darkness and the desert, St. Theresa’s Dark Night), a West Bound train (meditation on the East focuses on the Resurrection, meditation on the West focuses on the suffering, Passion and Death. A good theme for Lent.).

And the train…. well, that’s just cool.

3 Responses to “An email from a friend”

  1. Paula Says:

    Greetings from Missouri!
    There is a RR track about 5 miles from our house and we hear the whistle as the train comes through the area known as “Algoa Flats”. There are two prisons in that area. I always use the whistle as a signal to pray for the men incarcerated there.

    I very much enjoyed your interpetation of the symbols given to you on Ash Wednesday. Symbols are God’s way of communicating with us, we simply need to be open to identifying them. “..eye has not seen, ear has not heard…” but yours are open and listening. Good for you! 🙂

    And just for fun, have you heard of the Unity Awards .. they are the Catholic equivalent to the Dove Awards in the “christian” music industry. The 2005 Unity Award for Video of the Year was a tune called “Like A Train” by the object of my obsession – Ceili Rain (KAY-lee). You can see the video on their website under “Ceili Flix”.

    Blessed Lent to you, Padre!

  2. Englishleigh Says:

    Hello, Father Todd…long time to post. This was a great story…gave me chills. Congratulations on your new digs…and a blessed Lent to you.


  3. Father Todd Reitmeyer Says:

    Hiya Leigh. Life is keeping me busy at the moment. I still have 3 homilies to put up. Just one note of clarification.. It was my priest friend that sent me the email who moved into the new rectory. You wouldn’t believe where he was living before… first it was a little hunting camper and then a converted tool shed. That aside, I really liked the story.

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: