32Recollections: The Pastorand Important Early Influences
My rst memories go back to the farm where myparents, Aloys and Ottilia Reiser, raised me, my brother,and my three sisters during the Great Depression. Myfather was a truck farmer, meaning the vegetables andmeat he raised was trucked into the Minneapolis FarmersMarket for sale every day. Farming was a difcult wayto support a family during the Great Depression yet myfather never faltered in his faith that God would providefor us. My father never said, “We’ll try” when telling ussomething needed to get done. Instead, he told us, “Wewill!” This lesson in perseverance was one all of hischildren took to heart.The little parish we attended in Medina, Minnesota,was called Holy Name, a small country parish of seventyfamilies with a parish school of about eighty students,divided into two classrooms. We attended Holy Namethrough eighth grade and learned our lessons so well thatwe outpaced our public school classmates once we movedonto Wayzata High School.It was at home on our family farm and at events in oursmall parish where I developed my love for God and theCatholic faith. My parents worked hard, fed us well, lovedus and loved each other. Never once did I hear my parentsquarrel.I was ordained in 1949 and have devoted the remain
der of my life to the faith, serving God’s people, minister
ing, presiding over baptisms, marriages and funerals,lifting up the needy, helping the poor.Since my ordination, I have traveled around theglobe, witnessed dramatic world events, built upGod’s church to the best of my ability, and pausedonce a week to jot down my thoughts on it all. In thisrst section, I share some of my columns to give youan idea about the early inuences that shaped me.
Aloys and Ottilia Reiser