A week after his arrival Frank Burt rolled shirts for his suitcase. There was a knock on the door. He welcomed John McCarter in and poured him orange juice. John sat himself and his leather satchel on the bed.
“I want to say how glad I am the Anglican Church is taking over the Mission. “
“There would be no Mission without you, Reverend McCarter,” said Frank.
“As Timothy said, the organisation gave us little support. Thank you. I had only seventeen dollars a week at best. Seven went to Timothy. At times it felt like the loss of my own child.”
His face was wet with tears of joy. Frank was taken aback.
“There was the cost of furniture and equipment,” said John. “I would be grateful for any remuneration.”
“Understandably. Of course, of course. I shall recommend the Board issues a grant to compensate you.”
John McCarter brightened up at this. “Thank you. We are in some need. “ He took his satchel, opened it and handed Frank a bundle of documents. “I want you to have this: my subscription list.”
It was quite a list.
Later that day Frank took the train back to New Jersey. He spent the weekend on a large report. London responded: Burt could employ Trebitsch for six months (to begin) at £150 yearly, and authorised the rental of a Mission house. Before the reply came, Frank learned Timotheus and Margarethe had brought Robert Johann Trebitsch into the world. He was delighted the family would be looked after. He read on. McCarter was to be paid £12 for the furniture, but a goodwill grant. They regretted, was out of the question.
Griffintown was a dangerous place to convert Jews. Margarethe and her husband had talked about what would happen if he didn’t come home. He swatted the notion away. Their neighbours were reliable. Next door, Benjamin and Deanna, had been specifically targeted for the missionary’s pitches. Finally, Benjamin relented and invited Ignacz Timotheus in. The three of them knelt on the living room floor and approached the Lord in Prayer.
A moment’s silence: alone with God.
Featured image attribution: The Irish Ghetto of Montreal: Griffintown, by Krikor Tersakian.