The Ways of Saint Anthony, by Sister M. Josephine

cover of the ebook 'The Ways of Saint Anthony', by Sister M Josephine

A Line of Information

The writer of The Ways of Saint Anthony is very much interested in the education of poor young men for the priesthood in the Order of Saint Francis of which Saint Anthony was such an illustrious member.

In order to “do her share” towards this end she promised to write thirteen stories about the dear Franciscan Saint for Saint Anthony Messenger if the Editor would supply the facts. He did and she kept her promise.

The names and places in these stories are fiction; the incidents, however, are real. They were sent to the Editor by clients of the Saint in their accounts of thanksgivings for favors received through Saint Anthony’s intercession and for which most of them had promised publication. The writer has simply woven these accounts into readable stories.

– the Editor

Saint Anthony and the Crucifix

The five o’clock bell rang through the quiet corridors and aroused the sleeping inmates of the cloister. Poor Sister Joachim! Poor Sister Salome! They should have been up long ago, for the train would steam away from the station, six miles distant, in an hour, and such a rush as it would mean for them to make it! However, there was nothing for it but to rush, for at eight o’clock the children would begin to arrive and Monday morning was a bad time to be away from the post of duty. A hasty toilet; a hurried breakfast; and then the restful drive through the exquisite May morning when God’s love spoke through the wakening world and infused a new vigor deep into the soul with every breath of the fresh spring air; an hour’s ride in the dingy train; and then the thousand and one things that must be done at the last minute before school. No wonder Sister Salome did not miss the crucifix she wore in her cincture as open sign of her sacred profession, the only article of real value she possessed, her chiefest treasure. Boys and girls were in her thoughts; and Catechism and Theorems and Compositions and History Facts excluded anything personal for hours.

But at last she missed it. The chiming of the far-away clock struck her ears and mechanically she felt for the sacred emblem to kiss it, only to realize with a start that it was gone. Where was it? What had she done with it? When had she had it? One question after another passed through her mind, but none could she answer; and anyway the worrisome business must be set aside until after school. Then she could telephone home, for of course, in her haste she had left it in her cell. But she hadn’t. No trace of the precious crucifix could be found, nor could an appeal to the Street Car Company, nor even to the Railroad Superintendent restore the lost treasure. The latter, it is true, promised to write on East for possible information at the Claim Office, but the outcome looked rather indefinite. Until now Sister Salome had worked as if she were to do it all, now it was time to pray as if God were to do it all; so much for Saint Ignatius. Of course, Saint Anthony would find it; he always did find things; and the more forlorn the case the more sure the result. She knew that. So the Responsory to Saint Anthony was added to the daily Mass prayers, for she would make a novena to the Wonder Worker.

It was a very hopeful Sister Salome who was called to the telephone on the sixth day, only to meet with a most keen disappointment. The answer had come from the Claim Office and the crucifix was not there. The Superintendent was most kind, he seemed to have an intuition of the loss; but his report ended the matter, it was useless to inquire further. Thursday morning Sister Salome went to Mass with – well, at least a discouraged heart. “Dear Saint Anthony,” she prayed, “there’s nothing left now but a miracle and I ask you for that,” and she said the Responsory as usual.

When that evening Father Lawrence, the young chaplain of the Convent, called her up to tell her he had good news for her, she thought it was only the decision about a sermon they had had difficulty in arranging, and was quite satisfied with his assuring her he would tell her the next day. She never dreamed it was Saint Anthony’s Miracle!

Friday morning the young priest was beaming when she walked into the parlor. He held a parcel towards her, “Is this yours?” she saw the shape, took it in her hand, and sat down. It was her crucifix! Where had Father Lawrence got it? Of course, his prayers had been enlisted, for wasn’t Saint Anthony his very own elder brother? But how had he come by it? And then Father Lawrence laughed, “Do you want me to tell you?” he asked.

He had gone on Wednesday to one of the suburban towns to spend the afternoon at his home. During the course of his visit his mother told him of the lovely ride she had had on Sunday afternoon. It seemed that one of her near neighbors, Mr. Weston, had a matter of business to attend to, and as the weather was delightful he made of it a pleasure trip and took some of his friends. Much to her surprise they visited convents. Mr. Weston was trying to place a crucifix and went first to one religious order and then to another, seeking the owner. It was a lovely afternoon and the more places they went, the longer the ride would last, so that just suited everyone. But after visiting five different houses in vain, Mr. Weston drew a sigh of relief and in very satisfied tones announced that he intended to keep the crucifix himself, that he had wanted it from the moment he saw it, and only the thought of the owner’s regret had driven him to the trouble he had taken. All the party agreed that the crucifix was rightfully his and they all thought it a very pleasant ending of a very pleasant ride.

Father Lawrence listened with interest to this recital, and then asked where Mr. Weston had got that crucifix.

“Oh,” said his mother, “some man found it on the B. & O. train Monday morning of last week, and realizing it was precious, and knowing that Mr. Weston was Mayor of the town, thought him the proper custodian for it, until the owner could be located. But now Mr. Weston can keep it,” she finished.

“Indeed he can’t,” said Father Lawrence. “Please send straight over to the Alayor’s house and bring that crucifix here. I know the owner and I want to give it to her.”

Sister Salome caught her breath. “It was a miracle wasn’t it? Saint Anthony’s miracle!”

But Father Lawrence only laughed again. “Write it for Saint Anthony Messenger,” he said. And she did.

Saint Anthony and the Diamond

Mrs. Marston suddenly took her hands off the piano. She and Sister Joachim were playing duos in the Library while her husband performed his professional duties for the nuns, and she had been so intent on the music that she had actually forgot for a while. She wouldn’t have believed she could forget, but in her interest her loss has slipped from her mind until suddenly she caught sight of her wedding ring and that reminded her.

“Oh, Sister Joachim!” she exclaimed, “do you know Saint Anthony?” and the unaccustomed title fell hesitatingly from her lips.

Sister Joachim was amused. Of course she knew Saint Anthony. Every Catholic did. Acquaintance with him was a sort of open sesame to the broad circle of hagiology; and besides who would ever find all the things that were lost if it were not for Saint Anthony?

“Why, yes,” she said, “I know Saint Anthony – that is, I love him and ask his help and he is good enough to find most of the things I mislay. But why do you ask?”

“Well,” sighed Mrs. Marston, “I lost the diamond out of my ring, the one the Doctor gave me for our engagement, and I have searched the town for it and I can’t find it. The people over at the Inn said I ought to ask Saint Anthony for it. They said you would tell me about him.”

Sister Joachim was interested. She felt bad at her guest’s loss; and besides she saw her chance to introduce a new and undreamed-of client to Saint Anthony.

“Why, how did it happen?” she inquired, sympathetically.

“I don’t know,” said Mrs. Marston, “I had the ring on after supper and then later when we came back from the ice cream parlor the diamond was gone. That was the only place I have been, that and our own yard. Of course we looked for it, everywhere – on the street, in the ice cream place, and in our yard. Oh, I assure you I haven’t missed an inch. You know we are just getting ready to move, and I have to find it before I go!”

“Yes,” said Sister Joachim, “so we’ll ask Saint Anthony to help us.” And then she told all about the dear Franciscan Saint, whose one idea of happiness in heaven seems to be to help the needy on earth.

Mrs. Marston listened intently. She had never given much thought to saints and their ways, but now she grasped at the idea of supernatural help. “Oh, do ask him,” she said. “I will be so glad if you do, for I certainly feel bad about losing my precious diamond.”

“Yes,” went on Sister Joachim, “we will ask him, and then dear Mrs. Marston, when he has found it for you, you must give an alms in his honor, a dollar to some poor person or something like that, you know. Will you promise to give it?”

“Indeed, indeed, I will,” said Mrs. Marston, and in her mind’s eye she already saw the shining stone safe back on her finger again. For while she had no personal experience of the assistance of the saints, somehow Sister Joachim was very confident, and that was most reassuring.

That evening at recreation on the lawn Sister Joachim told the story of Mrs. Marston’s loss and asked for prayers for the recovery of the stone. It really meant very much to her, for she somehow felt responsible for its return. Of course, the prayers were promised, and day by day the Responsory was said, though by none quite so vehemently as by herself.

A few days later vacation was over and off went the Sisters to the city where broomsticks and books and dusters and schedules filled in the day until the classes should begin. Only the nightly Responsory went on, for Sister Joachim’s faith never faltered.

And one day she received a letter in a strange hand-writing. “Dear Sister Joachim,” Mrs. Marston wrote, “I have found my diamond, and in such a remarkable way, too. I had almost given up hope when the inspiration came to me to rake the yard, though I never heard of any one raking a yard for a little stone like that before. It sounds absurd, I know, but the very first pull 1 gave with the rake through the grass, up came my diamond. I think that was miraculous.”

And Sister Joachim happily thought so too, and the Responsory to the Blessed Saint Anthony went right on, but this time it was in thanksgiving.

Saint Anthony as a Lawyer

“Well,” said Sister Salome as she passed Sister Joachim in the hall, “our convent is not the only one that can tell tales of Saint Anthony. Read this.” And she handed her a letter she had just received from the postman. Sister Joachim slipped the large envelope into her capacious pocket and went on about her work; but that afternoon she returned it with a smile of assurance that such a story could only add a new laurel to Saint Anthony’s crown. “Write it out,” she said, “it will do good.”

Sister Salome pondered long and intently over the letter. It was from the Superior of a Franciscan Convent and told of a most remarkable event, in which Saint Anthony was, of course, the hero. The facts were all true; and Sister Salome agreed with the Reverend Mother that everyone ought to know them, so finally she wrote.

Mrs. Osbourne was having a great trial. Of course, it was not her first trial, for she had been serving the Heavenly King too many years not to have felt His loving chastisements many times; but this was the most serious that had yet befallen her. Her brother-in-law was suing her, and what made it worse she had no proof at all that she did not owe him the money he claimed.

Perhaps no mere man could ever understand the helplessness a woman feels at the sound of that direful word, the law. It stands for all that is blackest in human relation; and so, unjust though she knew the case to be, poor Mrs. Osbourne lay awake night after night tortured by the fears aroused in her by sheriff’s summons and lawyer’s briefs, and judge’s verdict. But all the time she prayed for she had a staunch friend in heaven who before this had won many a hopeless case. That friend was Saint Anthony.

Through the long night hours Mrs. Osbourne’s wakeful mind went over and over the facts. She recalled how just before her husband’s death – and what a good honest man her husband had been! – he had asked her to give a hundred dollars to the very brother who was now causing her such sorrow. How gladly she had given it, without any hesitation, any delay! So her mind went on recalling every detail of the last sad days of her husband’s life and again she felt the blank that death always leaves in its wake.

Then came the startling announcement of this debt, her husband’s personal note for two thousand five hundred dollars. It was a sum she could hardly afford to pay – and again Mrs. Osbourne would fall to praying. Finally in her distress she had recourse to her good friends at the Franciscan Convent and the Reverend Mother gave her a medal of Saint Anthony and assured her of the constant intercession of the Sisters.

Instead of the case coming up for trial on the day for which it was set, the hearing was postponed several times, and each time the suspense became harder to bear and each time a little more of Mrs. Osbourne’s courage oozed away. Finally her doom was sealed. The case of Osbourne vs. Osbourne was set for a certain Monday; and it was a trembling Mrs. Osbourne who took her place in the courtroom, trying to smile courageously on young Mr. Lawton, her anxious lawyer, and clasping at the same time the precious medal in her shaking hand.

With all the skill he could master, Mr. Lawton could not find one shred of testimony to offset the plaintiff’s statement. Mr. Osbourne said, his brother had given him the note at a time when he needed twenty-five hundred dollars and that his witness, Mr. Venable, had been present at the transfer of the money at the Phoenix Hotel on the preceding September 15th. Unfortunately, Mrs. Osbourne had been absent from home that day and there was absolutely no proof that her husband had not gone to the hotel to meet the two men.

Then the court ordered the note to be produced. Once again Mrs. Osbourne saw the small piece of typewritten paper that had caused her such weeks of agony. There it all was, a promise to pay the said sum signed by her own husband in a cool steady hand. The signature was his, there was no doubt of it. Only John Osbourne could have written it; but every one knew that on September 15th John Osbourne was in no condition to go to a hotel, nor could he possibly have signed his name with such a steady stroke. Evidently there was some trick in the matter; but the lawyer was at his wit’s end to find it and Mrs. Osbourne prayed harder than ever. At last, just before the case was given to the jury, as if by an inspiration, Mr. Lawton asked to have the note photographed and the case was adjourned for that day.

When Mrs. Osbourne woke the next morning, Saint Anthony’s own Tuesday, she felt almost hopeless. Would the photograph prove of any value But she felt it was the very last straw and she clung to it with all her soul.

After the usual formalities of court routine had been complied with, Mr. Lawton produced a paper from an envelope which he took from his pocket, and handed it gravely to the judge. It was the photograph of the note. The silence was intense. Mrs. Osbourne leaned forward in her chair and clasped her medal more closely. “Now, Saint Anthony,” she prayed, “now, Oh! help us!” Then there was a stir! The photograph revealed upon examination another note beneath the typed one!

What happened during the next few minutes will always be more or less of a blank to Mrs. Osbourne. Only by degrees did the truth filter into her overwrought brain. That the original writing had been simply a letter of introduction given by her husband to his brother and erased by the latter, with the exception of the signature and then filled out with the promissory note, was later made clear to her. Just then she was overwhelmed with the stunning fact that Saint Anthony had saved her – dear Saint Anthony – whose power was not shortened.

“Isn’t it all wonderful?” said Sister Salome later, when she was discussing the story with Sister Joachim.

“Why, of course not,” replied the latter promptly. “The trouble is, we never remember that Saint Anthony is the blessed Wonder-Worker, and then when he does just what we ought to expect a wonder-worker to do, we are very much surprised. All he wants is to be asked and surely Mrs. Osbourne did ask him; and besides the Sisters promised to publish the favor if he granted it, and how many people, who never thought of it before, will know now that Saint Anthony is a fine lawyer.”

Sister Joachim laughed. “Perhaps that is why I wrote it,” she said.

Saint Anthony and the Ford

“Do you think Saint Anthony could find an oil well on your uncle’s Texas land?” asked Sister Salome of Sister Joachim as they were doing their Friday afternoon cleaning together. “Or is it only lost things he returns?”

Sister Joachim stopped short in amazement. “Well, whatever put such an idea as that into your head?” she exclaimed.

“Why,” said Sister Salome, “he has been finding an automobile, a lost one, I mean, and I wish he would find an oil well and then we could build our chapel.”

“Tell me about the automobile,” said Sister Joachim, as she carefully shook out the dust cloth and settled herself to listen.

Sister Salome, who never lost a chance to exploit the wonders of Saint Anthony, at once began:

“I read a letter from the priest to whom it happened and it is all true. He is the pastor in a small Kentucky town and he was very proud, rightly proud, of the twenty-one young men of his parish sent to keep Old Glory waving over this free land of ours. So when the Fourth of July came round and the patriotic citizens of Wayneville, a near-by town, united to serve a barbecue for the soldiers, of course Father Newman went – ”

“Was that his real name?” broke in Sister Joachim.

“Why, no,” answered her companion. “I can’t use any real names, and anyway, real names are seldom put in stories. Well, Father Newman went with Mr. Hill, a friend of his, who was the proud owner of an almost new Ford. The entertainment proved to be very pleasant. Everyone was in high good humor and hospitality was lavished upon all comers. Even after several hours had passed the men were loath to leave; but business was pressing, so about two o’clock they said good-bye to their hosts and started for their machine. Imagine their amazement to find it gone! They searched and searched the grounds, but to no avail. Finally, convinced that it was lost, they reported the matter to the police.

“That car is Saint Anthony’s particular care,” said Mr. Hill. “There are medals in it of Saint Christopher, Saint Benedict and Saint Anthony, but Saint Anthony is really responsible for its safe-keeping, as I gave him the charge.”

“Father Newman began the Responsory, for he, too, had a special predilection for the wonder-working Saint, and neither he nor Mr. Hill doubted for a minute that the machine would be found. When and where, of course, they could not tell!

“Saturday morning Father Newman offered his Mass in honor of Saint Anthony, while on Sunday his congregation was asked to pray for a special intention. However, nothing developed that day; and Monday passed without any news. But neither Mr. Hill’s confidence nor that of the priest flagged in the least.”

“Isn’t it wonderful,” said Sister Joachim musingly, “with what confidence Saint Anthony inspires you? If you ever ask him for a thing you almost forget the possibility of not obtaining it.”

“Well,’ Mr. Hill and Father Newman never considered that possibility, evidently,” answered Sister Salome; and she went on with her story.

“Tuesday morning – ”

“Why, Tuesday is Saint Anthony’s special day,” interrupted Sister Joachim.

But Sister Salome didn’t stop. “Tuesday morning, after Mass, the first news came by telegram. The Ford was safe and awaiting its owner at police headquarters in East Saint Louis. Of course, the two gentlemen were amazed and still more, of course, delighted; and that night found them with the officer of Wayneville on the way to their destination, two hundred and sixty-five miles distant.

“They were evidently expected in Saint Louis, for when the three men entered the police station the next morning, they were admitted to the inner office without a demur. The Kentucky officer displayed his credentials and all courtesy was shown to his party by the chief and his assistants.

“After a little conversation they were led to the machine in question. Sure enough, it was the missing one! Great was their delight and many their expressions of gratitude to Saint Anthony; for Father Newman had let slip no time explaining to these earthly restorers of lost things the assistance they had received from the heavenly one.

“‘It was remarkable,’ said the officer who had brought in the car. ‘I’ll admit Saint Anthony’s help without any question; for while I was standing on the street talking to a friend of mine last Sunday afternoon, I saw this rather new looking Ford go by; and something told me very plainly and very persistently to get that car!'”

“‘That was Saint Anthony’s inspiration,” said Father Newman.

“‘True enough,’ replied the officer, ‘and I certainly obeyed it. When I looked at the car more closely I saw plainly enough that it carried no license, so I immediately ordered the occupants to headquarters. But the license wasn’t lost,’ he added; ‘we found it under the front mat.’

“When Father Newman tells the story he says the drive east over the Lincoln Trail was much pleasanter than the trip west on the railroad. But do you know, he says, they never could find a trace of the Saint Christopher and Saint Benedict medals.”

“What of the medal of Saint Anthony?” asked Sister Joachim.

“Well, that is remarkable, too,” answered Sister Salome. “It had been fastened originally to the seat, but evidently the thieves had broken it off*; only it refused to be lost and had hidden itself beneath a little cement that was spilled on the floor of the machine. Now what do you suppose those men were doing with that cement?”

“I haven’t an idea,” said Sister Joachim, slowly. “But I think we’d better ask Saint Anthony to find the oil on that Texas land. I don’t believe it would be half as hard for him to do that as to trace a stolen machine. And then we could build our chapel and have a special shrine for him. Who knows, perhaps some day Father Newman would say a Mass of Thanksgiving there!”

“Yes, in honor of Saint Anthony,” finished Sister Salome.

Saint Anthony as a Salesman

“Martha found her war stamp,” said Sister Joachim coming into the room with her arms full of books.

Sister Salome rose quickly. “Well, I am going straight out and say ‘I told you so.’ Martha is such a doubting Thomas and it hurts my feelings when anyone doubts Saint Anthony! Besides I must remind her that she’ll have to give the fifty cents she promised to the Bread Fund.”

“Did she promise fifty cents?” asked Sister Joachim. “Well, that’s not so bad! Ten per cent on the capital, isn’t it? Please ask her where she found it. I didn’t have time to listen to it all.” And she settled herself to her work as Sister Salome closed the door behind her. But she was not to have peace then; for Sister Salome returned almost immediately and she started on a favorite theme at once.

“It was behind her trunk stuck under the baseboard,” she volunteered. “She said she thought it was in the trunk but she must have laid it on the top and then it fell off when the lid was raised. She looked and looked through everything she had, but she didn’t find it until Katherine swept the floor, and there it was!”

“The next time she’ll have more faith,” remarked Sister Joachim, and she went back to her books.

“Do you remember the time you told me Saint Anthony liked to have his favors published?” asked Sister Salome after about a moment of silence.

Sister Joachim shook her head in assent; but she kept one eye on her Spanish book.

“I think I rather turned up my nose at the idea,” continued Sister Salome, “but it’s true and I will have to apologize to you.” Whereupon she produced a letter from her pocket and pushed it across the table.

But Sister Joachim didn’t move. The Spanish Subjunctive is not to be trifled with and she was very anxious to get through with her task.

“Oh, then I’ll read it to you,” Sister Salome, not in the least daunted went on, “and you’ll be glad you are so generous with your superior critical powers, and occasionally prod on my discouraged efforts to honor Saint Anthony. You know these stories are as much yours as they are mine, anyway,” she finished.

“Well, go on then,” said Sister Joachim, resignedly, as she closed her book for the morning. Sister Salome always wanted someone to listen to something at the wrong time; though of course. Sister Joachim didn’t really feel that way about Saint Anthony. Dear Saint Anthony! It was just the Spanish!

So very slowly Sister Salome read aloud.

“I can’t quite make out whether this woman has a store or not,” she said, as she folded the letter, “but I think she has; and anyway I am going to make her have one, for otherwise how could she be selling blankets? And the facts are certainly true.”

Sister Joachim waited.

“I think that is one of the best things Saint Anthony has done yet,” mused Sister Salome thoughtfully. “That woman – what was her name?”

“Mary T. Swing,” prompted Sister Joachim.

“Well, Mary T. Swing had invested all her capital in blankets and she couldn’t sell any of them. When she finally did make a sale and the blankets were delivered, instead of money in payment, she received word that they were not what had been ordered, and were entirely unsatisfactory.”

“They didn’t tell her what the trouble was, did they?” interrupted Sister Joachim. “I wonder if they were too long or too short or too heavy or too light, or what was the matter with them. I wish Miss Swing had told us.”

“Well, it doesn’t make any difference, for they were not accepted,” continued Sister Salome, “and poor Miss Swing was broken-hearted. I don’t think anything in this world is so difficult to bear as disappointments. Even little ones hurt; and think how she must have depended on her sales. But now comes the point of my apology. Sister Joachim! Miss Mary T. Swing – I feel so familiar when I call her plain Mary – came across a Saint Anthony Messenger with our story of ‘Saint Anthony as a Lawyer’ in it, and when she read it, she was encouraged and felt better at once.”

“Why, we all feel better when we hear of good things done to others,” said Sister Joachim. “It does give us courage – or at least it does me.”

“And it did Mary T. too,” replied Sister Salome. “She immediately began a Novena to Saint Anthony and in her own words ‘the next minute after my prayers were said and I promised Saint Anthony I would subscribe for the Messenger, my heart felt lighter.'”

“Isn’t it marvelous what prayer will accomplish?” exclaimed Sister Joachim. “What would we do without it?”

“Nothing at all for this world, or the next either,” said Sister Salome. “But the real answer to the Novena came later, when just before it was finished the poor little anxious storekeeper received a most happy surprise. The blankets were not only not unsatisfactory but every one was sold. Her whole investment had turned out well! Wasn’t that splendid?”

“Yes, indeed,” replied Sister Joachim, “I should think it was. What are you going to call this story?”

“Just what the woman to whom it happened did,” responded Sister Salome, “‘Saint Anthony as a Salesman’!”

A Twice Told Tale of Saint Anthony

Sister Salome was in a brown study. Miss Katherine had just told her an old, old story of Saint Anthony and somehow it haunted her. She could picture all the details: the sick woman, the determined doctor, the unpalatable medicine, the dread alternative, and then – Saint Anthony.

Of course, she tried hard to keep her mind on the work in hand but it was almost hopeless for she wanted to tell that story to spread the knowledge and love of the dear Franciscan Saint. “Shall I, or shall I not,” she kept saying over and over, until finally in desperation she went off to find Sister Joachim. She’d know, and very promptly; she always did.

Sister Joachim was in the garden with Peter, who was planting potatoes in nice even rows. But evidently the interruption was not unwelcome for she came immediately when she saw Sister Salome and they both sat down by the shrine where it was shady and cool.

“Do you think it would be fair to tell a story about Saint Anthony a second time?” began Sister Salome. “You know, some people like to hear the same thing over and over again; and my brother used to say he’d take me every place he went because I could always laugh at his stories, and I’d heard some of them a dozen times.” And she smiled, remembering.

“Oh,” groaned Sister Joachim, “Sister Salome, why don’t you tell the story first and then put your question, instead of beginning with the question?”

“Well, I will,” responded Sister Salome. Sister Joachim was patient with her after all, so she went on:

“Miss Katherine told me she had a friend, Mrs. Varley, out in Fenton, who is quite an old lady now and who is the subject of one of Saint Anthony’s miracles. She also said, Mrs. Varley had told the story before, but she’d be only too glad to have it told again so the whole world could know what Saint Anthony did for her.”

“Well, what did he do?” asked Sister Joachim, patiently.

“Why, he cured her, of course,” replied Sister Salome. “You see when Mrs. Varley was a young woman she was a confirmed invalid. She had a tumor that resisted every effort of the doctor to cure it, and it made her so unsightly that she was practically confined to the house.”

Sister Joachim looked at the blue sky, across which little fleecy clouds were scurrying, and at the budding trees, where the birds were arguing over their summer homes. “I can hardly imagine a greater cross,” she said, with a little prayer of gratitude for her own good health. “What happened next?”

“It didn’t happen,” replied Sister Salome. “Doctor Hopper wanted it, too; but Mrs. Varley wouldn’t consent. He said, only an operation would save her, for she was growing steadily worse; and she said, she would rather die, though she wasn’t anxious to do that either, and then – enter Saint Anthony.

“A neighbor brought in a book containing a short life of the Wonder-Worker, and as Mrs. Varley read it she made up her mind. Like that New England woman we used to laugh so much about, ‘She made it up slow but she made it up firm.’ She was going to be cured, and by Saint Anthony, too!

“She didn’t have a statue of the Saint, so she borrowed one, and she arranged a little altar near her bed for it; and then began her devotions. They were to last nine weeks, a Novena of weeks instead of days.”

“She was more patient than most of us are,” remarked Sister Joachim. “Now if you, for instance, didn’t have days in your Novenas you would have hours, wouldn’t you?”

Sister Salome nodded. “How well you know me! But I can wait when I have to,” she finished.

“What were the devotions?” asked Sister Joachim.

“Prayers, of course,” was the reply. “And one candle before the Saint the first week, two the second, and so on, until the last week found the shrine brilliant with nine candles.”

“Did the cure begin right away?” wondered Sister Joachim.

“No, Saint Anthony waited until his own day, Tuesday, before he made the slightest move. It was then that Mrs. Varley felt the first change in her condition.”

“I wonder why people say that Tuesday is Saint Anthony’s day?” mused Sister Joachim, as she watched a sleek blackbird swagger across the lawn.

“Well, it hasn’t been very long since I asked the same question myself,” and Sister Salome smiled as she thought of Father David’s hunt for the answer. “So out of my profound knowledge I’ll enlighten you. Saint Anthony was buried on Tuesday, and maybe it was his habitual humility that made him love the day on which he was finally hidden from the gaze of the world, but anyway, when he appeared to one of his clients afterwards he told her to make a devotion of nine consecutive Tuesdays and her prayer would be heard. So Airs. Varley began to improve on Tuesday and then she went right on. The doctor, not knowing he had a rival in heaven, had brought two bottles of medicine, a kind of last resource. And what do you suppose Mrs. Varley did with them?”

“Threw them away – that’s what I would have done,” answered Sister Joachim.

“No, she didn’t do that,” and Sister Salome shook her head. “She didn’t say a word to the doctor though, but she took those two bottles and put them behind the statue saying, ‘Saint Anthony, I’ll take no more medicine; you’ll have to cure me,’ and went right on praying and improving steadily. By the end of the Novena she was cured.”

“What did the doctor say when he found it out?” interrupted Sister Joachim.

“The doctor thought his medicine had cured her. When he first saw how well she looked, and how well she was, he was delighted and clapped his hands saying, ‘Bully! bully! I’ll get you through!’ But Mrs. Varley says, she thought to herself, ‘Saint Anthony will get me through with – out your aid, my good doctor!’ And so he did. And she says, she’s sure it was Saint Anthony, for she continued her daily devotions to him after her cure, until one time she perceived a return of the old pain. When she told her husband, he said, ‘There! you have forgotten your prayers to Saint Anthony!’ and sure enough, Mrs. Varley acknowledged she hadn’t thought of them for a couple of days.”

“I wish things like that would happen to me when I forget,” said Sister Joachim, after a short pause.

“Well, if your patron saint had a sense of humor, maybe they would,” laughed Sister Salome. “They say,” she went on, “that Mrs. Varley is responsible for the public devotions to Saint Anthony in the church at Fenton. She did everything she could to stir up the congregation and she begged the money for the statue. It is lovely, too. Miss Katherine says.”

“I wish we had a nice statue of him,” sighed Sister Joachim thinking of the wonderful things he did. “Why, he might even build the chapel we want, and we need his help for so many things. But to answer your questions, if I were you I would tell this story a second time.”

Sister Salome got up and went into the house; but Sister Joachim sat perfectly still. She was thinking of the sweet Franciscan Saint; and through her mind went over and over the line of the Responsory “From beds of pain the sick arise.”

Saint Anthony as a Detective

After a long conversation at the telephone, Sister Salome came back into the room.

“That was John Bradford,” she vouchsafed, “and what do you think? He and Anne lost all their luggage when they were here last week. Someone stole the suitcases out of their automobile while they were at dinner, and John is very much upset.”

“How did it happen?” asked Sister Joachim looking up from the pile of papers she was correcting.

“Well, some of his mother’s things were with theirs,” was the answer. “And John carried the cases into her house so she could get her own possessions, and when he put them back in the trunk, he didn’t lock it. Then they went to his sister’s for dinner, and when they got into the machine, an hour later, the suitcases were gone.”

“That doesn’t sound like John,” remarked Sister Joachim; “but I suppose all men take chances.”

“They’d never get anywhere if they didn’t, though they sometimes come to grief over them and Sister Salome sighed at the remembrance of a few of her own experiences.

“Of course you told John to pray to Saint Anthony and promise him something for his Bread Fund.” Sister Joachim smiled as she went back to her work. She knew Sister Salome and her ways, and that the Bread Fund was a very special hobby.

“Why, of course, what else could I say?” was the reply.

The next morning Sister Salome began a Novena to Saint Anthony. She felt sort of responsible for the loss and she didn’t want to have John and Anne tell everyone they had lost all their possessions when they came to spend her feast-day with her, though it was the downright truth, and besides they might never want to come again!

“I think I’ll write a letter to Anne and tell her to pray to Saint Anthony too, and I’ll send her some Saint Anthony’s stories to cheer her up. Confidence is a great asset when one prays!” and Sister Salome proceeded to put her resolution into effect at once.

But two or three weeks slipped away and as no more was heard from the luckless ones, their loss got pushed into the background, for examinations were looming large.

Then came a letter in Anne’s handwriting. No one but Anne would use green ink! When Sister Salome cut the envelope, she had to stoop to pick up a clipping which had been enclosed, and this is what she read:

BOYS’ CAVE IS RAIDED.

Three Youths Arrested and Quantity of Furnishings Held as Evidence.

Three boys were seized Monday afternoon and a gorgeously decorated cave in a new realty addition was raided by the detectives, who found draperies hung across the entrance and several empty suitcases and some women’s wearing apparel, which the police are holding as evidence. While investigating recent burglaries of school buildings on the East Side, the officers came across the cave. The youths were turned over to the juvenile authorities.

“It breathes of Sherlock Holmes,” thought Sister Salome as she opened the letter. Anne wrote:

Columbus, Ohio.

Dear Sister Salome:

Saint Anthony is indeed our friend! This clipping is from Tuesday morning’s paper. After reading it I felt convinced that the wearing apparel was ours. That afternoon Mother and Paul went to the police station with me, where we found the grips, but with very little in them. Wednesday morning John and our lawyer got busy, but the boys refused to tell anything, sticking to the fact that they found them in a culvert. However, in all their chasing up of clues, Paul ran across a young man who had purchased John’s pearl stick-pin for seventy-five cents, it being valued at two hundred and fifty dollars by John. Well, today they “sweated” the boys and one told that they stole a ride on the train to Frostberg and sold them to some pawnbroker, so Paul has gone with the officers this afternoon to see how much they can recover, and Fm believing that he is going to bring back the clothes and jewelry, too. I’ll write again soon, but I just had to let you know of all this. I feel so grateful to you and all the Sisters for all their dear prayers. Many, many thanks and love to all, and here’s an extra share for you!

Lovingly, Anne.

P.S. – Colored ink is the latest fashion, so please do not mind my being fashionable!!!!!

When she had finished reading, Sister Salome stood perfectly still for a few moments. How did Saint Anthony ever plan out all these affairs? It wasn’t any trouble, of course, for him to put the Grade Book on the Parlor table when she had left it in a third-floor class room; and it didn’t require any thinking to make her find a letter lost for three days, safe among the contents of her capacious pocket, but to string Anne Bradford’s best dresses across a line in the children’s playhouse so the whole detective service of a large city couldn’t find them for a month – that certainly was ingenious.

“Sister Joachim, listen to this,” read Sister Salome, after she had trailed the busy nun up and down three flights of stairs; and Sister Joachim listened intently. Then she took the clipping and read it herself. “Is that John’s offering for the Bread Fund?” she asked, as she looked at the paper in Sister Salome’s hand while giving back the letter.

“No, that’s a side-track of Anne’s – sounds just like her, too! It appears she mislaid some War Stamps, and in a panic promised Saint Anthony twenty-five dollars for his Bread Fund if she found them, which she very promptly did in her Safety Deposit Box. It seems to me I wouldn’t call them lost, but she did, and she’s paying her debt.”

“I think Anne is a lovely girl,” said Sister Joachim.

“She certainly is a dear,” echoed Sister Salome, “and John was just made for her.” Sister Salome’s heart was very tender towards these young friends of hers, and indeed Mr. and Mrs. Bradford had their own warm place in the Convent circle of friends.

Nothing more was heard from them until the Jubilee brought them to the Convent for the festivities, and then there were always people around, so Sister Salome had to bide her time to ask the question which was on the tip of her tongue.

“Anne, how’d your suitcase affair turn out?” she began, when at last the two had a chance for a real talk.

“Didn’t I ever tell you that?” exclaimed Anne. “Well, we’ve been so busy getting settled in our new home, I haven’t had time to write. But do you know, I got almost all my things back, though John was not so fortunate. However, he’s perfectly satisfied. And it was so remarkable how the policemen found the cave. There was a band of boys about twelve or fourteen years old, regular little toughs they were, and they managed to get hold of a smaller lad whom they took with them to their cave. It was in a stone culvert and you’d never suspect it was there until you walked in. Of course the child was amazed, and that night at the dinner table he told his father where he had been and what he had seen, and his father at last became suspicious and telephoned the police.”

“And how did you ever think those things were yours when you read that clipping in the paper?” asked Sister Salome.

“I just felt it,” said Anne. “When we walked into the Police Station, my brother Paul and I, there lay our suitcases! The officers in charge asked me why we hadn’t reported the loss at once, and I told him it was reported inside of twenty minutes after discovery. But you see, we said our suit-cases were gone, and never thought to call them automobile suit-cases, and as these looked just like a traveling man’s box the police never connected them with our loss.”

“It took Saint Anthony to make that connection,” laughed Sister Salome.

Later in the evening John got out his check-book. “How shall we make it out,” he asked as he examined his fountain pen.

“Why, to Saint Anthony s Bread Fund,” replied Sister Salome with delight.

Saint Anthony’s “Little Things”

“Sister Joachim,” said Sister Salome as she gazed thoughtfully at the blank sheet of paper before her and then at the newly sharpened lead-pencil, “if you liked a person very much, would you rather hear several little things about him or one big thing?”

“Is that a conundrum?” asked Sister Joachim from across the study table, “because if it is I’ll give it up. I have too many problems to correct this evening to think about conundrums,” and Sister Joachim returned despairingly to the pile of papers before her.

However Sister Salome was not to be put off in that manner. “It is not a conundrum,” she answered indignantly. “I simply want to know whether you think I’d better tell a number of small favors Saint Anthony has granted or make this story wholly about a big one.”

“What small ones, as you call them, are you going to tell? All of those?” and Sister Joachim looked at the numerous letters Sister Salome had scattered before her. But she knew by experience that the sooner she satisfied Sister Salome, the sooner she would get back to her interrupted work; and besides, as she so often reminded herself when such interruptions did come, she loved the wonder-working Saint very dearly, too.

Sister Salome laughed. “Hardly,” she replied, “but some of them. They are not really small, of course; in fact, some of them are a matter of life and death; but they are incidents that people have written to Father David without giving any details; and Father David told me to use them as I chose.”

“And you want to use several in the same story,” said Sister Joachim. “I see; well, tell me one.”

Sister Salome did not have to be urged. “Here’s one, a beautiful one,” she began, “about a woman whose baby was sick; and besides making a Novena and applying Saint Anthony’s medal, what do you suppose she thought of doing?”

“I haven’t any idea,” said Sister Joachim.

“She gave the child’s weight in bread to Saint Anthony for his poor, and the little one began to get well immediately, although doctors and nurses had given it up.”

“Why, I don’t see how he could refuse a favor asked that way,” exclaimed Sister Joachim. “That sounds like a story out of the Ages of Faith.”

“It is always the Ages of Faith where Saint Anthony is concerned,” said Sister Salome seriously; and then she fell to examining her conscience to see where her own faith was wanting since the dear Franciscan Saint steadily refused her what she asked for. But she knew she didn’t ask properly. She had not sufficient patience and she always wanted the answer right away.

“The child’s weight in bread,” Sister Joachim was repeating softly to herself. “I like that! The Saints do almost anything that mothers ask them, don’t they?” she finished aloud. “I suppose they think about their own mothers and then they can’t refuse.”

“Oh! there are many, many mother stories!” eagerly exclaimed Sister Salome. “Here is a letter from a mother who wants to thank Saint Anthony for taking care of her son. He was a radio operator on a ship and was uninjured when two barges of dynamite exploded near it and killed about a hundred people.”

“I fancy the Saints like gratitude, too,” said Sister Joachim. “Don’t you love to think of them as being human just like we are?”

“I certainly do,” was the prompt response; “but here is another mother who insists that you don’t even have to ask Saint Anthony. You have only to speak lovingly about him and he helps you.”

“Does writing about him do just as well as talking about him?” queried Sister Joachim mischievously, but Sister Salome ignored this personal thrust and went right on.

“She says she and her children were discussing him one morning at the breakfast table and in the middle of the conversation her little daughter suddenly exclaimed that she had lost the tiny diamond out of the ring she wore. The family were distressed and they all looked for it. However, when school time came the children had to leave so the mother continued the search alone. She says she did not say a prayer but Saint Anthony must have taken their talk as one, for when she got back to the dining room there was that httle stone lying among some grains of sugar sprinkled on the table.”

Sister Joachim had forgot her evening’s task by the time this story was ended. “Any other one?” she asked.

“Yes,” was the answer, “one about a woman – not a Catholic – who lost her pocket-book and bewailed it because of some treasures she carried in it. Not money, you know, but trifles with associations connected with them.”

“What did she do about it? Anything different?” asked Sister Joachim.

“Not particularly different,” replied Sister Salome. “She just went off to some Sisters for consolation and they told her to pray and to promise Saint Anthony an alms if she found it; but she wouldn’t wait; she gave the alms at once.”

“And when did she find it?” asked Sister Joachim. “Oh, dear!” she added suddenly, “I wish you hadn’t begun this for I have to finish these papers and I just can’t help listening to stories about Saint Anthony. When did she find it?”

“She didn’t find it at all for months,” answered Sister Salome, “and she had almost given up hope, when some man picked it up near a street car track where it had apparently been lying all the time. It was completely ruined but the contents were undisturbed.”

“Saint Anthony is very impartial, isn’t he? Sort of all things to all men,” said Sister Joachim.

Sister Salome did not heed this remark, as she was rummaging through her letters. “I am going to stop now,” she announced finally, as she found what she was searching for, “but I’ll have to tell you about Alice first. I call her Alice for I feel as though I knew her. She makes me think of you. Sister Joachim.”

Sister Joachim grunted. “She must be interesting,” she remarked.

But Sister Salome went right on: “Now, Alice wanted a big picture of her patron Saint that was being raffled at a Church bazaar. She had only one chance, but she prayed and prayed that she might win it and she felt so sure she would that she even asked her nephew to go with her to the hall to carry it home for her.”

“Well, that was confidence,” interrupted Sister Joachim. “Did she get it?”

“Don’t be in such a hurry, my dear,” returned Sister Salome in a righteous voice, “you’ll find out soon. It seems that a wealthy lady, an acquaintance of Alice’s, wanted the picture, too, and probably thought that her numerous chances entitled her to it, for as she said very grandly, ‘Saint Anthony is a friend of mine.’ Well, he is a cousin of mine,’ boldly replied her rival, not to be outdone, ‘and I mean to win him!’ I wonder how it would feel to have a Saint for a cousin,” added Sister Salome.

“Some people say it is very hard to live with one, but, of course, I’ve never tried it,” laughed Sister Joachim with a glance across the table.

“Well, some day you’ll have a chance then,” was the reply. “That is if you outlive me,” and Sister Salome made her a little bow.

“Did Alice win her picture?” resumed Sister Joachim.

“Of course, she did. And what do you think She wasn’t satisfied then with her cousinly relationship, for in the exuberance of her joy, she says at the end of her letter, ‘and now Saint Anthony is my brother, as I am a Tertiary.’ Isn’t that delightful?”

When the two had stopped laughing, Sister Joachim said: “That’s another reason why I like Saint Anthony. He certainly does enjoy a joke. Do you remember Father David telling about the woman who asked him to let her find a dime she had lost and she found two? But don’t you hate to lose things?”

Sister Salome did not answer at once. “I am afraid I don’t mind it so much as I should,” she confessed finally. “Saint Anthony won’t give me what I want him to, but he finds every thing I misplace. I just say nine Our Fathers, and Hail Marys and Glorys, or promise them to him, and then I don’t have to worry, he’ll find it.”

“Well, I notice he often gives you a scare or two before he does find them,” remarked Sister Joachim. “I’ve seen you searching frantically for things I knew you had lost!”

Sister Salome laughed. “That’s the reason I like all these little things he does, and want to tell about them. They give me confidence; and as you’ve noticed correctly, I often have need of confidence,” she finished.

Saint Anthony and the Money in the Roof

“Where did you get that?” asked Sister Joachim suspiciously, as Sister Salome entered the room with a dollar bill in her hand. Sister Salome was the custodian of the Chapel Fund, and it was an open secret that every thing she could collect went to swell the dimes and the nickels and even the unused postage stamps that were hoarded under that dignified name. But she was accustomed to such imputations, so she only laughed as she replied:

Why Elizabeth Blake gave it to me for Saint Anthony’s Bread Fund. She is paying an honest debt for she lost her pocket-book during the crowded Christmas shopping and promised Saint Anthony a dollar if he would find it. By the time she got to the claim desk, there it was. The Wonder-Worker was swifter than Elizabeth.”

“Well, didn’t Marion give you a dollar this morning for one of her lost possessions?” asked Sister Joachim. “I thought I heard something of it.”

“Oh yes, her rosary. She says, it simply disappeared, and knowing it was in some pocket, she ransacked every one she had but couldn’t find it; then she promised a dollar to the Bread Fund, went to get a paper out of her raincoat, and there was the rosary. But that dollar is upstairs. This is not the same one.”

“That makes me think of what Father David told us about a friend of his, a bookkeeper – I think he said, her name was Grace. She was a dollar short in her accounts and promised Saint Anthony a quarter, if he found the mistake for her. Saint Anthony paid no attention. Then she promised him a dollar and immediately the error was discovered. ‘Oh!’ said Grace, ‘Saint Anthony has raised his prices, too!’ And she paid the dollar.”

“I should think she would,” replied Sister Salome.

“Isn’t it queer,” said Sister Joachim, musingly, “that Saint Anthony’s name is so closely associated with money, and yet he himself was as poor as a church-mouse.”

“Perhaps that’s the reason he can handle so much of it and not be defiled,” was the answer, “for besides being as poor as a church-mouse, he was poor in spirit, too. And then you must remember that Saint Anthony has plenty of common sense and he knows people have to have money if they want to Hve and raise a family.”

“Wouldn’t it be interesting to make a list of Saint Anthony’s characteristics – just those we have found out through people’s letters,” said Sister Joachim. “I wonder which one I should like best.”

“Let’s try it,” exclaimed Sister Salome. “There’s his common sense, and his love of gratitude, and his appreciation of a joke – but speaking of people’s letters, I have one here that I am much interested in,” and she produced a thick envelope from her pocket.

“What is it?” asked Sister Joachim settling herself to listen.

“It is from Mrs. Manly, a woman in the West who writes about an affair she was personally connected with. She says that one day during the Fair in San Francisco, she was called to the phone by a neighbor of hers, Mrs. Worhouse, a woman she had known for years. Mrs. Worhouse with her husband and ten-year-old son, lived on one of the hills overlooking the Fair Grounds, and Master Fred spent much time on the roof of the house inspecting what was going on at the Fair. It appears it was a very steep gabled roof and was reached by a ladder nailed to the side wall. Can you imagine anything more attractive to a small boy?”

“It sounds as though it were made for Fred’s benefit, doesn’t it?” laughed Sister Joachim. “Think what our boys would do if we had a building like that. It would be worse than the cherry tree.”

“Couldn’t be,” answered Sister Salome, recalling the various encounters she had had with the masculine element of the school during cherry time. Then she laughed. “Think of all the cherry trees there have been and of all the small boys, yes, and small girls, too, that have attacked them, and still the world goes on! But to go back to the story.

“Mrs. Worhouse said she had been robbed. She had saved the money for her rent and when she had the proper amount she had it changed to a bill which she put in a pocket-book with some small coins, and laid it away for the collector’s call. That morning, he had come, and after an exchange of pleasantries, she took out the pocket-book, opened it, and – the bill was gone! Poor Mrs. Worhouse was dazed. She had worked so hard to save it and then to lose it just at the moment it was most needed seemed too hard to bear.”

“The collector was very considerate. He said he would wait and come back in a week or so; and after he was gone Mrs. Worhouse searched the place. It was a hopeless task and finally she went to the telephone to pour out her troubles to Mrs. Manly. She knew her friend had great devotion to Saint Anthony and she begged her prayers.”

“I wonder if we Catholics ever realize what our devotion to the Saints means to other people,” said Sister Joachim, earnestly. “And besides, isn’t it a comfort to have someone as big and wise and as holy as a Saint is, to help us in our troubles?” Sister Joachim fairly purred with contentment at the thought; and Sister Salome made an act of thanksgiving for her own particular friends in heaven, but aloud she said:

“Mrs. Manly tried to console Mrs. Worhouse for her loss, and immediately began a devotion to the dear Franciscan Saint, that he would find the money. In the meantime Mrs. Worhouse searched again. No nook, no corner, was left unvisited, but what was the use? The money was not to be found. The first day passed, and the second day passed, and the third day was almost ended when Mrs. Manly’s telephone rank loud and long. As she took down the receiver, Mrs. Worhouse began breathlessly:

“What do you think I have found my money.”

“Do you know, sometimes a telephone bell actually tells you who is at the other end of the line?” said Sister Joachim with assurance.

“Yes, and sometimes it doesn’t,” remarked Sister Salome drily, remembering the agent who had wanted her to buy soap a few days before. “Anyway, Mrs. Manly didn’t expect such an announcement as that. ‘Tell me about it,’ she said.

“‘You know how hard it rained this morning,’ was the rejoinder. ‘Well, our roof leaked, and leaked pretty badly, too. So I asked the agent to send a man to fix it and he came straight out.'”

“That was a strange agent,” murmured Sister Joachim, who often had leaks to see to.

Sister Salome paid no attention. She repeated Airs. Worhouse’s words. “‘He came straight out and it only took him a short time to repair the leak as there seemed to be but one shingle out of place. Of course, my little son went up to superintend the job. Then about an hour after the man left, Fred came to me’ – Mrs. Worhouse stopped with a catch in her breath.”

“‘And then,’ said Mrs. Manly after waiting a moment. Mrs. Worhouse went on bravely: ‘Fred told me the man who fixed the roof had my money’ ‘Did you ever?’ exclaimed Mrs. Manly. ‘Where did he get it.?'”

“‘You may well ask where he got it,’ said Mrs. Worhouse. ‘Why it was in the hole on the roof; the shingle had been taken up and the money put inside, and the shingle had been replaced again; but badly, of course.'”

“Who ever would look for money in a hole in a roof,” said Sister Joachim. Then she laughed. “We have some holes in our own as we know when it rains. Do you suppose we could find money in any of them?”

“If we had a Fred to put it there, we might,” remarked Sister Salome significantly.

“Why!” gasped Sister Joachim. This was astounding information.

“I don’t wonder you are amazed,” said Sister Salome. “But it is the truth. Mrs. Worhouse said, her little boy confessed that he had taken the money from the purse, and then, not knowing what to do with it, he had climbed to the roof, his favorite resort, removed a shingle and put it carefully into the hole. No one thought anything about his going up on the roof because he spent so much time there anyway.”

“What made him tell his mother?” asked Sister Joachim.

“Mrs. Worhouse said he went up the ladder after the man and watched him to see if he would find the money. Then he saw him pick it up, look at it carefully, and put it in his pocket. When the work was done, the lad waited around to see if the man would give it to his mother, but instead, he went off with it. Then Master Fred got scared and breaking down, told her all about it.”

“Mrs. Worhouse called him up and he came right out again. Then she told him about the money having been there and that her little boy had seen him take it. The man did not deny it at all. He only asked her if she could describe the bill, and when Mrs. Worhouse told him it was an old, worn, twenty-dollar bill, he handed it to her without another word.”

“Now, Sister Joachim,” said Sister Salome after a short pause. “Which was really Saint Anthony’s part in the affair; making the boy own up about taking the money, or making the man give it up?”

“Why both of them, of course,” promptly replied Sister Joachim, “for if the boy had not owned up, the man would never have been asked for the money; and if the man had not given it up, there never would have been any story about Saint Anthony!”

Saint Anthony at Every Turn

The room was very quiet. Even the automobiles on the Avenue seemed hushed, and nothing broke the stillness except the occasional scratching of Sister Salome’s pencil, or the scraping of her eraser across her paper. She was in a great hurry and she hardly lifted her head as she wrote and wrote. This story had to be finished by night, for Father David was depending on it and she did not want to disappoint him. So she looked at Sister Joachim just long enough to smile when the latter entered the room, and then went right on with her task. Sister Joachim sat down quietly and waited. All of a sudden Sister Salome said:

“Wasn’t Virginia Cain here today, Sister Joachim?”

Sister Joachim nodded. “Yes,” she answered. “She just got home and came right over to see us. Wasn’t that nice? She says they are going to try to get a house, and if they succeed she’ll give you a Saint Anthony Story.”

Sister Salome laughed. “Don’t talk to me about Saint Anthony stories,” she said. “I’m swamped now trying to fit all of these together,” and she pointed to the pile of paper before her.

“Well, be sure to put in about the man who employs Saint Anthony as an Insurance Agent. Father David declares he sends his premium regularly and is perfectly confident he’ll never have a fire. I fancy he won’t either,” finished Sister Joachim.

“If I were Saint Anthony I wouldn’t let him,” said Sister Salome, “and I’d also prosper a man who writes he has taken the Wonder-worker for a business partner. He gives him fifteen per cent of all his earnings.”

“Do you know. Sister Salome,” said Sister Joachim earnestly, “I am profoundly impressed by all these letters you have. The spirit of faith and resignation they manifest is remarkable, and confidence! why, there seems to be no limit to it.”

“Confidence!” exclaimed Sister Salome. “Here’s a letter from a young man who had confidence,” and she picked up an envelope and opened it. The writer was a Henry Bergman, a workman, who evidently could be very successful if he tried. But the pity of it was that he didn’t try, and drifting with bad companions into drink, he dropped his religion, and lost his employment, so he soon had nothing.

“That missionary priest who was here the other day told me,” said Sister Joachim, “that very few people who leave the Church do it because they lose their faith. Most of them simply drift through carelessness.”

“Well, Mr. Bergman writes that he never lost his faith,” answered Sister Salome, “and he also says that he seemed to hold fast to his confidence in Saint Anthony. Perhaps that is what brought him back.” And she went on with the letter.

It seemed that the young man’s condition finally got so bad he had absolutely nothing and then he was startled into thinking. He made a great resolution to reform. Of course, he needed money so he asked his brother to lend him some. The brother, of course, had little faith in his promises and flatly refused him. “Saint Anthony, help me,” murmured the young fellow as he turned away, and Saint Anthony must have helped him, for the very next morning the brother came back with twenty-five dollars, the amount he had been asked for.

“Now,” said Sister Salome, “Mr. Bergman is doing well. He has prospects of a good position and he has promised to send the Bread Fund a dollar each week for a year in thanksgiving.”

“Did he ask to have the story published?” asked Sister Joachim as Sister Salome laid down the letter.

“Yes, and I myself am beginning to believe in that sort of thanksgiving,” was the answer. And then with a smile Sister Salome went on: “If Saint Anthony ever finds the oil on that Texas land we’ll have to publish it from the housetops.” That Texas land was a standing joke between the two. “Here’s another letter, a very different kind.”

It was written by a woman who was sending an offering to the Bread Fund in thanksgiving for finding a valuable pin. The offering, she said, was “a great sacrifice but it would have been a greater one to have lost the pin.” She had shaken it out of the window when she was cleaning and she did not miss it until the next day when she was dressing to go out. She at once besieged Saint Anthony, and on her way down street she stopped at a neighbor’s house to ask her prayers also. But to her surprise the neighbor greeted her with the assurance that the lost treasure was perfectly safe, as her own little grandson had picked it up and it was in her possession that very minute.

“Where did that woman live?” asked Sister Joachim.

“In Philadelphia,” replied Sister Salome, “but here is a letter from Saint Louis, one from Newark, New Jersey, one from Louisville, one from Beloit, Wisconsin, another from Covington. Oh, they come from all over the Union. A man from Jamaica Plain, Massachusetts, writes to thank Saint Anthony for protecting him from injury in the explosion of a tank he was working on. He says he knows it was Saint Anthony because about twenty minutes before it happened he was saying his rosary and reading the Manual in honor of the Saint. Sister Joachim, I could hang my head when I read things like that. But here’s a letter that sounds like our Ethics Class problems.”

“Read it,” said Sister Joachim. “Let’s see how the dear Franciscan Saint solves such cases.”

“A Mrs. Burton writes: ‘I bought a dress and paid for it but the same was not satisfactory, so it was returned. The company refused to return my money. They deliberated a whole month, during which time I prayed to Saint Anthony. Yesterday I received a check from them.’ Now, what do you think of that?” asked Sister Salome.

“I think that Saint Anthony believes that ‘the greatest of these is charity,'” said Sister Joachim. “Did you hear the tale Sister Louise told the other day about an experience of hers?”

“No,” answered Sister Salome with interest. “Our Sister Louise? What was it?”

“You know Sister Louise is a convert,” was the reply. “She became a Catholic when she was about twelve years old at the Convent where she was at school at that time. Not long after she went home her mother came to her and said: ‘Dude, you go into the other room and say a prayer to that Saint that finds things. I have lost the money your father sent me.’ Mrs. Barret did not even know Saint Anthony’s name, but she wanted the money which she had lost. It was rolled up and fastened with a rubber band, and what she had done with it she hadn’t an idea.”

“Do you suppose Sister Louise enjoyed a joke as much then as she does now?” asked Sister Salome. “She must have been amused. I can just see her.”

“I don’t know whether she did or not; but she said the prayer, though the money did not turn up at once, and Mrs. Barret went on searching. After a while Sister Louise asked if she and her sister could get some pieces from the ragbag to make doll clothes, and when the permission was given, they ransacked it: and what do you think There was that roll of money. Evidently Mrs. Barret had gathered it up with the scraps off the sewing machine and stuffed it away. But she knew the proper thing to do. ‘Dude,’ she said, ‘you go right in and say some prayers to that Saint in thanksgiving,’ and Sister Louise went.”

“That’s the story I am going to end with,” announced Sister Salome with a little chuckle. “It is what you might call a homegrown product, and I think I ought to patronize it,” and Sister Salome bent once more over her paper and began to write.

Saint Anthony as a Specialist

When one wanted to be quiet and write there was no place like the bench out on the lawn. The trees were so beautiful with their fresh spring gowns; and the blackbirds hadn’t been North long enough to be saucy yet; while the fat rabbit that sat up on his haunches and looked so wise, was a perfect delight. Yes, that was the place to go, so Sister Salome gathered her papers and pencils and departed out of her warm classroom. Her fingers were itching to write, and why shouldn’t they be, when Saint Anthony had done a wonderful thing, indeed, and she was to have the honor of telling about it? Sister Salome felt she was very blest. This was the story:

Martha Davis lived with her mother and sister, Dorothy, in a large city and they made a very happy family. Every one knew that Martha had a cataract on one eye and had had it for years; but she was so bright and cheery in spite of it, that it never occurred to people to feel sorry for her. Even the family no longer suggested an operation. “No, no,” Martha used to say when the subject was first broached. “I won’t think of it at all. I won’t even consider it. So please drop the matter.” And no wonder she could not muster up her courage.

Twenty years before, when Martha was a young girl, her friends noticed that she was getting very near-sighted. She held her paper very close to her eyes when she read, and sewing seemed impossible unless the work was almost in her face. Her mother thought she needed glasses and so one day took her to Dr. Harding, a specialist, to have her eyes tested. Who does not know what the wait in a doctor’s office is? Time drags heavily and is relieved only by an occasional glimpse of the white-clad figure as he smiles upon his patients and then disappears for another interminable period. But Mrs. Davis and Martha were not accustomed to complain so they sat very quietly until they were summoned into the great man’s private office. It did not take him very long to diagnose the case and he soon announced that Martha was suffering, not from nearsightedness, as she thought, but from a cataract on each eye. The announcement came like a thunderbolt.

Sister Salome laid her pencil down very slowly. Then she looked up at the blue sky towards which a gray streak was rising steadily from a distant smokestack. All around the grass was green and on the edge of the walk a Robin Redbreast was cocking his head as though considering the merits of something creeping among the flowers. Sister Salome took a long breath! Had she ever really thanked God for her gift of sight, she wondered. What a blessing it was! And she could so easily have lost it, a hundred times over. She was surely ungrateful; but she would never be again, and she began once more to write.

Dr. Harding said the only thing to do was to perform an operation. He would first clear the right eye, and later would remove the cataract from the left one, which was not quite so bad. There was nothing really to worry about, he said. He had removed many such conditions and his success in this case was almost certain. He spoke in such a confident manner that both Martha and her mother took hope, and before they left it was agreed that the former should go to the hospital the next morning and the Doctor would make her as good as new.

That evening was scarcely a merry one in the Davis household, though each one tried to think of something pleasant to say, just to keep up the spirits of the others. However, at last it was over, the night was past, and Martha with her mother and sister presented herself at the hospital, pretty badly frightened, but outwardly brave and smiling.

Dr. Harding was in high, good spirits, and his cheery “good morning” was very reassuring. The preparations were speedily made and the oculist set to work. After a while Martha began to think something must be the matter; the Doctor looked worried; and there was a queer feeling in her eye. She thought that it must be draining. Even after the nurse had bandaged out all the light and had put her to bed, she could feel the same sensation; but she supposed it was part of the operation and so asked no questions and made no complaint.

When Mrs. Davis arrived at the hospital the following morning, the truth came out. In some unaccountable way, Dr. Harding had cut the eye-ball and the damage was irreparable. The eye was running steadily and would continue to run until the socket was empty, and there would be a total loss of sight.

Mrs. Davis was heart-broken, of course, but she was too much mistress of herself to make an outcry; and besides, Martha must be saved as much as possible. If it was God’s will, then they would all have to bear it. Only after she had returned home, did the full measure of her grief show itself, and she and Dorothy sorrowed together.

In the evening Dorothy was going to the hospital, so after tea she started out. But before she left the house, she wrote a petition to the Wonder-worker and promised him an offering for his Bread Fund, if her sister’s sight was saved. That would be a miracle indeed! The eyeball had collapsed and the liquid contents had almost entirely escaped. Dorothy, however, resolutely dropped her petition into the box before the Saint’s shrine in the Church, and then forced herself to hope.

Nor was she to be disappointed. The very next morning, the draining sensation ceased. When a little later on, the nurse removed the bandages for the doctor, his amazement was beyond words to describe. The socket was not only not empty, but to add to his astonishment, he found that it was refining and that the eyeball was reshaping itself. The thing was beyond the comprehension of the learned man who knew nothing of the dear Franciscan Saint and his ways. But he was to have still another shock, for on the third day Martha could see anything held before her. When she returned home the only difference her friends saw in her appearance was that her right eye looked very bright behind her new glasses! The miracle was worked!

“I wonder how it would feel,” said Sister Salome to herself, “to know that you had been the object of a true miracle.” For a long time she sat still pondering this; then she heard the meditation bell ring. “Anyway,” she added aloud as she gathered up her things, “the Responsory is right. If you would see miracles, ask Saint Anthony for them,” and she went in to prayers.

Saint Anthony – A Life Saver

“Dear Father David:

“I must write and tell you of my great escape from death, for I was surely as near death as any one could be and not get a scratch; but it is all due to Saint Anthony that I am still alive tonight.”

* * *

“There, now; that will surely be a story,” said Sister Salome to herself as her eyes ran hastily through the letter she held in her hands.

“What will surely be a story?” asked Sister Joachim, who had entered the room just in time to hear the end of the remark.

“Oh!” said Sister Salome, “I was just wishing you were here. It is so much easier to make up your mind when you have some one to disagree with you; and I am all at sixes and sevens as to which letters to use this time.”

“Read that one to me, the whole thing,” and Sister Joachim, sitting down near the window where she could keep one eye on Peter mowing the grass outside, “and then I’ll advise you and you’ll probably do as you please in the end.”

Sister Salome smiled. She was too interested in her work just then to be greatly offended, and besides she had a lurking suspicion that what everyone said must be true. She turned the paper over.

“This is a letter from a Mrs. Morrow,” she said. “But I think after all I’ll write the story first and then I’ll read it to you. That will give you a variety, anyway,” she finished.

So Sister Joachim went out to Peter and Sister Salome wrote quietly, referring every now and then to the letter lying before her. After a while she, too, went out doors and put her manuscript into Sister Joachim’s hand. This was what it said:

Mrs. Morrow had many things to do that day and she set about them in her own methodical, housewifely way. She was cheery and happy, and smiled a bit as she moved around. This was her birthday and one always feels different on a birthday. Maybe something was going to happen! One by one the morning chores were done, the children looked after, the house straightened. Then came the hour for the baby’s nap, that precious restful time when the little head lay soft upon her breast as she crooned the slumber song. But first she would make sure of Miss Margaret’s whereabouts for that sturdy little daughter was just at the exploring age when she needed a watchful eye. However, she was easily found for she was safe, intently making a garden over in the corner of the yard where the first green things came in spring. Mrs. Morrow suddenly remembered how she had always looked for the stars of Bethlehem as part of her early April birthday. With a tender little feeling for all childhood she turned back to her baby.

No – she’d stop before she sat down and put that pan of fat she wanted to render into the oven. It was not very hot now and the grease would be ready for her before dinner. It hardly took as long to do it as it did to think it, and soon she and sleepy little Mary were cuddled in the rocking chair by the dining-room window. Slowly the soft little body relaxed, the long silken eye-lashes lay quiet on the round pink cheeks, and the mother’s voice grew still.

Just then Mrs. Morrow’s eyes happened to see her little Manual of Saint Anthony lying on the table near her. She was making a Novena to her patron Saint, so she opened the book and turned to the Responsory. She would say it before she put the baby down and then she would go back to her various duties. Dear Saint Anthony! Surely he would give her what she asked him for so earnestly; and verse by verse the prayer slipped off her lips.

Then she rose quietly and laid the sleeping child on the bed in the next room, passing as she went the little one’s crib which stood near a door leading into the kitchen. Usually, in fact always, that was Mary’s napping place, but this morning Mrs. Morrow went right by it without knowing why. For a moment she stood watching her baby as it lay quietly sleeping with just the shadow of a smile across its lips. Surely God was good to her, and in her heart she framed a prayer of gratitude as she thought of her two wonderful children, her splendid husband, and the home that sheltered them all.

Now for many, many things that still awaited her capable hands. Happily, Mrs. Morrow went back into the kitchen and proceeded to open carefully the oven door. With the first whiff of air that entered, the burning grease, and even the pan that contained it, shot out onto the kitchen floor. Instantly the room was in a blaze. Walls and ceilings were great splotches of fire and grease. The door in the living-room was blown open and the pillow in the empty baby-crib caught the flame.

Just then Mr. Morrow, coming across the yard, saw the ominous glare and rushed to the door, only to see his wife dazed and motionless in the midst of the fire.

When the flames had been extinguished and the havoc could be more plainly seen, Saint Anthony’s power shone clearly forth. Mrs. Morrow was untouched, not so much as a spot of grease stained her clothing; and the baby had been saved by being laid upon the bed.

Sister Joachim handed the papers back with a smile. “That was a wonderful escape,” she said. “I should think she could tell now just how the three youths felt in the fiery furnace.”

“And Father David knows her, too,” said Sister Salome. “She is a friend of his. When we hear of such things, how can we ever falter in our trust?”

Saint Anthony and Our Community

“Sister Salome, why don’t you make your last Saint Anthony story a Community affair? I heard two of the Sisters discussing a remarkable thing this morning, and it just occurred to me that many of the other Sisters have had favors done to them, too,” said Sister Joachim as the two met on the back stairs.

“That’s a fine idea,” answered Sister Salome heartily, “but do you suppose they would tell their own experiences for publication?”

“Try them, try them,” urged Sister Joachim who had been doing some reconnoitering on the subject.

“I believe I will,” replied Sister Salome but she did not sound very enthusiastic. Sisters did not like to have their affairs in print. But “it’s all for a good cause” she thought as she entered the Infirmary to visit Sister Irene. Sister Irene had had some sort of a stroke but she was so cheery and patient, it was a tonic to spend five minutes with her. As luck would have it, the Infirmarian was there, too, and she was famous for her stories, so Sister Salome at once began in her most persuasive tone.

“Sister Ambrose, please tell me a real Saint Anthony story. Something he did for you, you know.”

But Sister Ambrose did not respond as she was supposed to do. On the contrary, she looked severely at Sister Salome and remarked:

“Indeed, then, I’ll give you no Saint Anthony story. Not if I had a whole field full, I wouldn’t,” she went on. “I gave you an authentic Saint Joseph story a long while ago and you never wrote it.” And from that position of defense of her patron Saint, Sister Ambrose could not be moved. The invalid and the culprit laughed together. The latter had a guilty conscience, for she knew Sister Ambrose had justice on her side; and moreover she was very fond of the Infirmarian and so could afford to laugh at her. But to tell the truth, the laugh was mostly on herself.

A little later in the morning she met Sister Estelle by whom she was accosted. “I hear you want some incidents. I have this one for you,” and Sister Estelle told about something that happened when she was a little girl.

“I remember going home from school one day,” she said, “and being met at the door by my mother. She was very much distressed and she told me to go right back to the church and pray to Saint Anthony to recover my father’s horse and wagon which had been stolen. I was horror-stricken at such a loss and I very willingly went. I remember my mother gave me a banana to eat on the way. Isn’t it funny how little things like that stick in the mind?” and Sister Estelle smiled at the recollection. “I suppose I’ll remember the banana when I’ve forgotten all about the horse.”

“Did you get it back?” asked Sister Salome.

“Yes, I made a promise to Saint Anthony for his Bread Fund and said some prayers; and then I went home again. But mother kept on praying most of the evening. We all felt very bad, and father was quite upset. We went to bed a very blue family; and what do you think? The next morning at five o’clock the horse and wagon were found tied to our hitching post. One of the neighbors saw them first and ran over and wakened the family to tell us of it.”

“That was wonderful,” said Sister Salome. “Where do you suppose they came from?”

“We never knew,” answered Sister Estelle; “but my father always thought either someone just borrowed them for some reason and then returned them; or if a thief took them, he got conscience struck and brought them back when no one could see him.”

“That will make a fine beginning,” said Sister Salome. “Thank you very much,” and she started off to find Sister Celestine who was generally in the Community at that hour. She had heard Sister Celestine’s story some time before but had forgotten the particulars; and it was only after she had threatened to make up those parts, that Sister Celestine, in self-defense began:

“It was one day when two Postulants were received. Each one wore a beautiful neck-chain which had been loaned to complete the bridal costume. When they went into the fore-choir to put on their habits, the Mistress of Novices handed me the chains to care for until they could be returned to their owners. I didn’t like the trust very much; but I took them and tied them both in a clean handkerchief, thinking they would be safe there. After the ceremony I met some friends and we went all over the house and lawns. It was a beautiful day so we walked more than usual for me, and I didn’t get in until the Angelus rang. I stopped long enough to say it just inside the children’s refectory door, and then went on in to supper. After I had finished eating I pulled my rosary out of my pocket hoping to say a few decades before the meal was done, when to my surprise and horror, I found one of those chains wound around my rosary. My heart almost stopped beating. Where was the other I assure you I began to pray, and I searched by pockets but the handkerchief was empty and the necklace was gone. Hurriedly I asked permission to leave; but I was distracted, and I did not know where to go first. I begged Saint Anthony to direct me to the place where the necklace was and then I started out to retrace my afternoon travels. As I passed the children’s refectory door, Sister Irene was just getting ready to serve the boarders, and she ignored me when I stopped to ask if she had seen the missing article. But as I turned to go something bright in the corner caught my eye. I had not been near that corner but I went over and picked up the necklace. If it had been anywhere else on the floor it would have been trampled on, but as it was, it was unharmed. Now,” finished Sister Celestine, “that is my Saint Anthony story.”

“Thank you very much,” replied Sister Salome. “I am glad I didn’t have to make up the parts, as I threatened. Yours are much better.”

“See that you use them then,” was Sister Celestine’s parking shot as Sister Salome started after Sister Angelica, whose step she had heard iu the corridor. Sister Angelica had stopped to speak to Sister Margaret about the lights, so Sister Salome thought this was her chance to kill two birds with one stone.

“Anything remarkable from Saint Anthony in this congregation,” she began as she drew near; “any real live favors from the Wonder-worker?”

Little Sister Angelica’s French eyes sparkled. “I sent my mother clothes and money all during the war, and I always put a picture of Saint Anthony in each parcel and nothing was ever lost.” The dear little Nun was an exile, and the War had been very hard on her family in France, so her gratitude to the dear Franciscan Saint was boundless. “I pray to him every day,” she added.

“My tale is a very homely one,” said Sister Margaret. “One morning I was getting breakfast and after the hash was made I went out to the back kitchen to clean the chopping machine. As I passed the table I picked up a platter with onion peels and scraps on it and thought I’d burn them, so I laid the parts of the chopper on the platter to carry them back. There was a big fire in the range and I scraped the refuse in and went on about my work. In a few moments I remembered about the chopper and wanted to put it together so I could set it away; but I couldn’t make it fit and then I discovered that the screw was gone. I looked everywhere for it, and finally began to pray to Saint Anthony. Then I remembered about burning the refuse and I opened the door of the range and poked up the coals. Saint Anthony was certainly taking care of that screw, for there it was, red hot, but there. Maybe I wasn’t glad?”

“You’re a fraud, Sister Margaret,” said Sister Salome. “I don’t know whether that tale is about you and the hash, or Saint Anthony and the screw” and she went on to find Mother Annunciata who would be sure to help her out.

Mother Annunciata was in her cell, stirring about busily. “Why, of course. Sister,” she replied when asked for a Saint Anthony favor, “I’ll tell you about the pins.”

“That sounds interesting,” said Sister Salome. “You see this is the last Saint Anthony story, the thirteenth of my promise, and I want it to be entirely about our own Community. Don’t you think that will be nice. Mother?”

“Indeed, I do,” was the hearty response, “and I’ll do my part. This is my story. One time, when I had charge of the children I sent for eighteen school pins for different girls who wanted them. When they came, the sealed parcel was given to me at recreation with the other mail. I opened the box and counted them and finding eighteen, put the box in my pocket and went to prayers. They were very tiny pins and I remember wondering that any one should be willing to pay the price they cost. After prayers I sat down at my table to read the mail and I laid the box before me. Then I went to bed. The next day when I went to give the children their pins, I discovered one was missing. I looked everywhere for it and prayed and prayed to Saint Anthony. I was much distressed, for I feared it had been stolen and I hated to think that. That evening at five o’clock we had an extra study-hour and I presided. I said my Office as I sat there, and before I began I made a strong appeal to Saint Anthony to let me know where the missing pin could be. Then I got bolder and I said: ‘Now, Saint Anthony, the six Sundays to Saint Aloysius begin tomorrow, and if I do not find that pin, I’ll stop praying to you and ask him to get it for me.’ When I had finished my Office I closed the book and slipped it into my pocket. As I did so, my hand struck something stiff. I could not imagine what it could be so I drew it out and there was the heavy paper in which the box had been wrapped, with that little pin inside it. Saint Anthony did not want to lose his title of finder of lost things to Saint Aloysius.”

“That is a splendid story. Mother Annunciata,” said Sister Salome. “I don’t think we can say Saint Anthony has slighted our household, can we?”

“No, dear, I don’t think we can,” replied the older Nun. “If you need any more you might ask Sister Cordula,” she added as Sister Salome got up to go.

“That is where I am going now,” was the answer, and she went down the corridor and knocked on Sister Cordula’s door.

“Come in,” was Sister Cordula’s greeting. “Come in. Sister Salome,” and Sister Salome forthwith did.

“Sister Cordula, do you know anything about Saint Anthony?” she asked as she sat down on the proffered chair.

“Saint Anthony is a fine man now,” instantly replied Sister Cordula.

“Why, Sister Cordula? What did he ever do for you?” asked Sister Salome insinuatingly. “Anything wonderful?”

“He found my brass key,” was the answer. “One time when I had charge of the Priest’s house, the Retreat Priest locked the door when he left and took the key with him. The Bishop was coming the next day and I couldn’t get in so I told Saint Anthony he’d have to find it for me and I promised him a Holy Communion. Then I tried a key 1 had tried over and over again and it turned the lock at once.”

Sister Salome was disappointed. She couldn’t put Sister Cordula’s brown eyes and her quaint little Irish manner on paper, and she knew the story wasn’t ended.

“How did the key turn up?” she questioned.

“Well,” said Sister Cordula, with a comical little nod. “I went to Mother Superior and told her I must have my key back, and she said I’d never get it: the Priest would never put a thought to an old brass key. I said: ‘Saint Anthony can make him shake out his pockets and give me my key back;’ but she only laughed. So I went off but I prayed every day for I was determined to have my key. One day after about five or six weeks it came. It was in the mail and it was addressed to Sister Cordula. ‘There,’ says I, ‘didn’t I say Saint Anthony would make him shake out his pockets? And isn’t he a fine man now?'”

“How did you get along?” asked Sister Joachim when Sister Salome appeared once more in the Community.

“Why, I’ll read you what I’ve written just as soon as I put in my own experience about the telegram,” answered Sister Salome sitting down by the table.

“What was it? I don’t think I ever heard it,” said Sister Joachim.

“Oh, yes, you did,” replied Sister Salome. “Don’t you remember the time my nephew, John, was in Washington on business, and I had to get a message to him before he started back? I was so late I was afraid to send it to his business address for fear he had left there, and I was almost equally afraid to entrust it to the care of the Conductor of the train. It seemed so useless to waste the money on both, so finally I promised the price of one to Saint Anthony for his Bread Fund if he would see that John got the other. Then I telegraphed in care of the Conductor, having got the number of the train from our office here. The next day when John arrived I happened to say something about the telegram. ‘Do you know, that was the queerest thing?’ he said. ‘I had just settled my belongings in the Pullman and was sauntering into the smoker when I saw a messenger boy come down the platform. He spoke to the Conductor who was standing there and showed him a telegram. The Conductor read the address and shook his head in the negative, so the boy started away. The thought flashed across my mind that maybe the message was for me, so I stepped to the platform, called the boy, and asked if he had a telegram for me. ‘I have one for Mr. Bradford,’ he answered. Well, I’m the man,’ said I, ‘and that’s how I got your message.’ Saint Anthony made just one dollar and thirty-five cents on that telegram,” went on Sister Salome. “He believes in saving the pennies and letting the pounds take care of themselves, evidently.”

There was silence for a little while, broken only by the scratching of Sister Salome’s pencil. Then she looked up.

“Do you know. Sister Joachim,” she said as she straightened out her papers, “I certainly am glad I made this promise to Saint Anthony. He has taught me many things I needed to learn. I trust he has increased the confidence of others as he has mine.”

“I’ve learned some things myself,” answered Sister Joachim. “But what are you going to do next for ‘the dear Franciscan Saint’ as you call him?”

Sister Salome smiled.

About This EBook

The text of this ebook is taken from the book The Ways of Saint Anthony, by Sister M. Josephine, Ursuline of Brown County. The edition used was published by Saint Anthony Messenger in Cincinnati, Ohio in 1922.

It has the Nihil obstat of Father Fulgentius Meyer, O.F.M., 19 November 1921; the Imprimatur of Archbishop Henry Moeller of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, Ohio, 22 November 1921; and the Imprimatur of Father Edmundus Klein, O.F.M., Archdiocese of Cincinnati, Ohio, 22 November 1921.

It has a dedication “to Mac”.