Our Poets October Poem - THE PADRE CAME HOME



"After nearly seventy years, since being recovered from a mass grave at

a POW camp in North Korea, the body of Chaplain (Captain) Emil J.                  

Kapaun. USA, was at last identified, reverently returned to his little

home  church in Pilsen, Kansas, and laid to rest with solemn ceremony.

For his heroism in that prison camp, staying to be captured, ministering

to his fellow-prisoners, defying his captors, he was awarded the Medal of

Honor. Posthumusly. And a first step toward sainthood." -- News item

We sing the old-time martyrs, "Who follows in their train",

And seldom think how some may tread today--

Not only under Nero did Christians suffer pain,

A many meet such fate along the way.


A dauntless Army chaplain set out to bear that cross,

He would not flee, though troops were pulling back,

Obedient to duty, the Great Martyr as his boss,

He faced the worst, and steadfast, did not crack.


He stole food for his buddies, he tended to the sick,

Guards beat him, sat him naked in the snow--

He led a Mass at Easter, used every kind of trick

To keep men's hopes alive, their hearts aglow.


Too soon, in mortal torment, his splendid spirit passed,

His body went with others, to the dust,

Yet patient toil recovered his name and bones at last,

Forever now he sleeps among the just.


And in a little country church they sing his holy name,

No more to be unnumbered or unknown,

Who never sought for glory or the shallow world's acclaim,

He sings them for his Lord, before the Throne. 



No comments: