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Defied General Butler.

One Sunday during the Civil War, while engaged in instructing some children, Father O'Keefe received the following telegram from General Benjamin Butler:

General Butler sends his compliments to Father O'Keefe and desires to know if he prays for the Federal authorities at the vesper service.’

Father O'Keefe's reply is characteristic. He wrote the following on the back of General Butler's note:

Father O'Keefe does not return his compliments to General Butler. I do not pray for the Federal authorities at the vesper service, nor do I intend to do so. Furthermore, I never heard of such a thing.’

Of course, it was thought by every one that on the receipt of the reply from Father O'Keefe General Butler would immediately order his arrest. However, he did not. Years afterwards General Butler and Father O'Keefe met, and the interchange of telegrams between them was referred to.

“I would have arrested you,” said the General, ‘but on account of the charitable works you were performing.’

“I was anxious that you should arrest me,” replied the priest. ‘I wanted to get to the front, but the vow of obedience to my bishop prevented me. If I had been arrested I might have had an opportunity to have gone there.’

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