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Close calls all around

On March 1, I celebrated my birthday.

On March 3, I almost had my death day.

I was driving home about 8 p.m. from a day of ministry at Oak Crest, along with a stop at the Maples in Towson. I was only about five minutes from my home at the Cathedral of Mary Our Queen rectory.

As I pulled out onto Charles Street from one of the side roads, a southbound car plowed right into me. The car struck my car just behind my driver’s seat. Had it hit my car a foot forward I likely would have been killed.

All I remember next is that my car was spun around, broken glass was everywhere, and cars were stopping all around. I hope you never experience anything like it.

Some of the traffic managed to drive around the wreckage. One car, however, did stop, and a nurse got out. She leaned into the passenger window, and asked if I was on coumadin, a blood thinner. I said that I was. She then reached through the passenger side and bandaged my bleeding hand. I think she saved my life.

Police and an ambulance arrived shortly. They had to cut away my driver’s side door, and lift me out of the car. I was taken to Sinai Hospital for treatment. It was a busy night at the hospital. There were five stretchers in front of me at the emergency room. I asked someone if they could call my good friend, Bill Kristofco. Bill stayed with me in the emergency room from 9 p.m. until I was released the next morning at 5 a.m. It was the longest night of my life.

There’s an old saying: “Life is fragile. Handle with prayer.” I’m blessed to be alive.

Along with the world, I am watching the coronavirus. I pray for those who have died from the virus. I pray for protection from the disease for all the world.

To paraphrase Jesus: “Fear is useless, what is needed is trust” (cf. Lk 8:50) In fact, I have been afraid. I think many others have been afraid too. But what gives me courage in the face of darkness is that Jesus promised to stay with us. Death is a part of time. Life and love are the promises of Jesus for for all eternity.