Recollections of My Life and Reflections on Times and Events During It: A Memoir by Father W. J. Howlett

Page 81

that marks him and no one else. There were many camping in the mountains, and all of us were rather unkempt in our appearance, but I never heard of any of the other having been mistaken for a priest. 

          I have referred to the friction between some of my predecessors and many of the members of the congregation on the Irish question. A few of the Irish were supposed to be Irish radicals who were plotting the destruction of England with dynamite. Poor men, hey talked a lot and sent a few dollars to politicians in New York and Ireland, but never did anything worse. As I have said, the coming of Michael Davitt was my first opportunity, but when John Devoy of New York came to ask me to preside at a public meeting in the opera house where he was to speak; and also when Sheridan, the famous “Number One” who was sought for by the British Government and who was living in Southern Colorado, asked the same favor of me, my stock rose to par with both of these men before the meetings, and I was sure their speeches would be as moderate as their reputations were radical. Some English sympathizers censured me through the press, but I answered them through the same medium, with the result that my careless patriots thought that I was as good an Irishman as they,  and they came back to the practice of their religion. 

          I had several missions during my pastorate and one of my missionaries was Father Brady, a Paulist from New York. It happened that as he was coming to my parish through the mountains the stagecoach in which he was riding was upset, but without injury to the passengers. Among the passengers were several preachers, and the remark of one of them at the time of the accident was not bad. “This,” said he, “is what I judge to be of the greatest outpouring of the Gospel ever witnessed in this section.”

          Father Camp, A Jesuit from the West, was another who gave a mission and every night after the last exercises he wanted a dish of cornmeal mush and milk. This leads me to remark that priests’ housekeepers seem to misjudge the stomachs of missionaries. The poor men are fed on all the extras and rich dishes each cook can compound; roast fowl, salads, puddings, pastries, pies, cakes, spiced fish and meats, oysters in every style, until their stomachs must be burned and paralyzed with spices, acids, and rich condiments as if trying to outdo the cook at their last mission. If house-keepers could only understand how much some missionaries long for a plain meal and peace while eating it and not to be urged and pressed to have more of this and of that when they have had all that they cared for and then some! How often they would like a Jiggs Dinner or an Irish dinner of leg of mutton and turnips. Father Mark Moeslein, C.P., was as simple a feeder as could be found, but he had the knack of tickling the vanity of the cooks. When they presented him with one of their prize dishes he always tested it. Praised it highly and asked for the recipe of it. Those recipes did not go into the kitchen of the Passionist Monastery, and probably poor Father Mark is not using them with his colored

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