Inherit the Wind

Inherit the Wind s

Three Days before Pentecost, Fr Gordon MacRae marks 32 years of priesthood. “Inherit the Wind! Pentecost and the Breath of God” is Part I of a planned June 4 post.

It’s spring cleaning and inspection time behind these stone walls this week. It means a week of scrubbing all the concrete and steel surfaces of this prison cell, and then stowing away and out of sight the entire contents of two lives to makes it look like no one actually lives here.

I have no real objections to this annual cleaning. Last week I reached for a new typewriter ribbon stored deep in the dark recesses of a corner under my steel bunk, and I would swear one of those dust bunnies actually growled at me. I generally keep things clean, but not quite enough for the annual “Good Cell-Keeping Seal of Approval.”

Spring inspection is especially a challenge for me because, as a writer with no computer and no access to the online world, I have scraps of notes and clippings hidden everywhere. Prisoners who keep scribbled notes are usually suspect. Most such notes detail in-house gambling rings, gang activity, and any manner of trafficking in contraband. My collection of notes and clippings are all about black holes, newly discovered planets, and the peculiar quest of some in science to render God obsolete. Yes, my friends, there’s a science post coming – maybe even two!

But not right away. This week as we scrape and scrub and store, and then pray the Warden doesn’t actually look under the bunk, I will also be writing in my mind our next TSW post, slated for June 4, four days before Pentecost and the day before I mark 32 years of priesthood. I have a few thoughts on both.

But first I want to ask you to revisit a post that serves as sort of a prequel to both Pentecost and priesthood. It’s a 2011 Pentecost post, and one of my own favorites on These Stone Walls. Please read and share anew, “Inherit the Wind! Pentecost and the Breath of God.”

thermometerEditors’s Note: a continued thanks to TSW readers for their generosity in responding to Ryan MacDonald’s appeal to help with the legal costs, at the Federal level. We haven’t reached our goal yet, so please share this link to Ryan’s news alert post!

About Fr. Gordon J. MacRae

The late Cardinal Avery Dulles and The Rev. Richard John Neuhaus encouraged Father MacRae to write. Cardinal Dulles wrote in 2005: “Someday your story and that of your fellow sufferers will come to light and will be instrumental in a reform. Your writing, which is clear, eloquent, and spiritually sound will be a monument to your trials.” READ MORE


  1. Mary Jean Diemer says:

    Dear Father Gordon,
    You have truly blessed my life!
    God bless you on the 32nd year of your ordination!
    Love and friendship always, Jeannie

    Always for Others
    By Easter Almuena

    You are the image and likeness of God
    But with you the morning awakens
    With the call to rise
    Not for you
    But always for others.

    God handpicked you from a myriad of souls
    Molded you since you were a babe
    To prepare you for a journey
    Not for you
    But always for others.

    God blessed you with wisdom
    To use to give form to his plans
    And love to carry them out
    Not for you
    But always for others.

    Mary walks with you
    Guiding and loving you
    For to her you are a Christ
    Not for you
    But always for others.

    You hold the Body of Christ
    Embrace his name and proclaim it
    And a father and counselor you have become
    Not for you
    But always for others.

    God forever bless you
    Walk and carry you when your feet are weary
    Bring peace and joy to your heart
    For though your life is never for you
    It is Christ’s and he delights in you.

  2. Mary Fran says:

    Well, Fr. Gordon, I guess the mailbag will be full of good wishes for you this week. At least, I hope it will be. My card is in the mail.

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