The mining towns of the West had an oversupply of con artists in search of suckers. After two years of delays, a shameless scoundrel named Anthony Blum, accused of fleecing the local Catholic priest, Father Debruycher, out of $5,000 on a “Sure thing” gold mine in Gleeson, Arizona, was finally brought before the judge.
He’d just been sworn in to testify when suddenly he collapsed on the floor. The judge shouted, “Is there a doctor in the courtroom?”
By strange coincidence there was a doctor in the courtroom—-Blum’s personal physician just happened to be present. He knelt beside the dying man and quickly pronounced him a goner.
The doctor asked if a priest was present as Blum wanted to confess his sins so he could go on to his Great Reward a cleansed man. Father Debruycher just happened to be the only priest available.
The judge gave him the permission to proceed with hearing Blum’s confession and administer absolution.
But wait! A miracle suddenly occurred. Apparently, Blum’s confession had cleared his conscience and purged his heart attack. He arose from the courtroom floor as if resurrected from the dead and announced he felt like a new man. His doctor pronounced him fit and ready to go home.
A few days later the court was back in session and Blum was once facing justice. However, the only witness for the prosecution was Father Debruycher and since he was under the seal of confession he could never reveal the shyster’s confession.
The case was dismissed and Blum was free to find himself another pigeon.