Sister quickly retraced her steps and headed upstairs to tell everyone and as she did our ear-deafening fire alarm system went off. Doors slammed shut and lights flashed! "Smoke! There's smoke downstairs!" Sister Judith Miryam yelled! Immediately the Sisters in the kitchen began heading toward the front of the monastery, helping the older sisters and making sure everyone was out the building. Sr. Maria, who was at Adoration, quickly reposed the Blessed Sacrament. Fr. Kieran was called (he wasn't home) and then Sr. Mary Daniel asked, "Did someone call 911?" It might be stating the obvious but no one had yet! Sr. Judith Miryam quickly called. Of course, Jeff, our maintenance man who is a fireman had gone home for the day!
So, we all headed out and hung around the front doors of the monastery probably providing much curiosity for those driving by! The trucks arrived quickly and the fireman ascertained that the compressor had burnt out and that everything was OK. So, back inside and back to work washing dishes and clearing out the refrigerator.
Last week the upright freezer that is home for our chicken, turkey, cheese, etc. broke down but no one knew until several days later when the smell alerted anyone walking by. All afternoon sisters were saying, "Do you smell that fishy smell downstairs?" Most of our freezers are donated and at least one breaks down every year but usually we find out sooner rather than later. This time it was later!
These breakdowns in our kitchen equipment highlight why a complete renovation of our kitchen is so crucial. Our workmen go to great lengths to fix all equipment and keep it going as long as possible but eventually things just need to be replaced!
We are grateful to our Lord that this incident happened during the day and not at night when no one was around and that it wasn't more serious. Our Lady, who is truly the prioress of the house watches over us! We are also very grateful to the city fire department for their expeditious response to our call.