1999 March 4 – Thank you to bro priest (Prison Writings)
March 4, 1999
Dear brother priest:
Just a note of thanks to Fr. Michael Amadeo and all the folks who helped to get these weekly reflections out to you, especially the secretaries who helped type the raw text and the Des Moines Catholic Worker community who helped get the finished product out into the mail. Mostly though, I want thank Fr. Michael who did most of the typing, editing and copying of these weekly tomes that made this project possible.
At first it was thought that these reflections by Fr. Morlan and myself would serve as helpful tools for you in your weekly homily preparations, plus give Fr. Morlan and myself an avenue to stay in touch and in your minds and prayers as we were being held captive.
As our prison time ground on in the Charles County Jail, this project took on a much more urgent and personal purpose for me. It helped me keep my sanity. It gave me a sense of meaning and purpose in a jail setting that was most difficult and trying.
Without any good books, magazines or newspapers to read while being held in a cell block with little to do, the efforts I made to study, reflect and write on the weekly Sunday Lectionary text helped keep my experience grounded in holy Scriptures. It gave me a base for my prayer life and helped me put a biblical perspective to what was happening around me.
I am not sure how helpful these reflections were for you in your homily prep; it was not always easy to get them to you in a timely fashion. Nor am I sure that they helped to keep the memory of Fr. Morlan and myself before you. I am sure that they were a life-saver for me while I was being held captive in the Charles County Jail and for this I will be eternally grateful to Fr. Michael and all the other folks who helped to make this project possible.
My time here in the Federal Prison Camp in Yankton, S.D., has been ‘easy’ after the last 4 1/2 months in the Charles County Jail and being in transient, it’s not hard to see why they call these Federal Prison Camps the ‘county club’ facilities of the Federal Bureau of Prisons. I’m looking forward to seeing you all soon. I hope to hit Des Moines by Thursday, March 25th and to be able to attend the annual Priest dinner and Chrism Mass at St. Ambrose. I will see many of you then.
Fr. Frank Cordaro; ‘Out Law Priest’ & “Prisoner for Christ Sake!’ Yankton Federal Prison Camp