The Letters:

Basic Training: April 23--July 4, 1972

Fort Knox, Kentucky

Company C, 17th Bn, 5th Bde



20.  Grampa Schneider

Thursday P.M. [May 18; postmarked May 19, 1972]

Dear John:

I wish to say a Holy and happy birthday to you, and the same would be said regardless of where you are. The experience you are now receiving is, of course, something that will serve you well, and though you may not think so at the present, still it is true, for the simple reason that any activity, providing it is good and worth while, always proves at some time in the future to be for the best. Of course, there are times when one can't quite see this, but none the less, it is, in my opinion, quite true; though no matter how difficult things might be, nevertheless, the making the best of the matter, will always prove quite helpful, and very worth while, all of which about brings me to the point of my letter, and of which I am going to speak about now, and that is your FAITH.

You have probably heard it said, that one's faith is a great help to one, in ever so many circumstances; and this, too is true; and the thing about the Faith that should appeal to you is simply because of the truth contained therein; and we do not realize how marvelous it is to have the one true Faith, and to belong to the one true Church; which is altogether too often taken for granted; but believe you me, there are ever so many people who can tell you this is the truth; and the opinion is expressed from experience, and again, because they have found out they are dealing with the truth; and this is something that one should appreciate; and realize how wonderful to have our Faith and all that means. I know it is difficult to understand this, and especially, when one is still young, but believe you me, there is nothing, absolutely nothing like one's Faith, and when it happens to be the one True Faith, this is truly the pearl of great price; and it is simply not possible to tell you just what it can and will mean to a person, providing one makes himself available to the inspirations thereof.

I am going to send you the Novena leaflet to Our Mother of Perpetual Help, and I don't know whether you know how much devotion I have to her, but it is, suffice to say, something, and I place Her on the top of the list, next to the Heavenly Trinity; and it should not take too much wondering why this should be so; because when you get right down to cases, if the Mother of God is not the most powerful when it comes to intercession, I don't know my marbles; but the truth again is that as a matter of history, there has never yet been a case where one sought Her aid, and went unanswered. It is just not in the books not to be heard; and I am sure that if you would resolve to make the Novena to Her, and make one right after the other, you will understand what I mean; and I am sure there are ever so many things that you would like her help in, so make up your mind to do this; and first of all, She will probably make you strong, very strong in the practice of your faith. This is about it for now, So with the best wishes for everything,

As Ever,
[signed]
The Old Maestro

[Included was a Holy Card, Official Novena Prayers In Honor of Our Mother of Perpetual Help]