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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Childhood (09/03/09)

TITLE: Sunday's Child
By Marie Cashion
09/07/09


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Sunday’s Child

Throughout our childhood, one thing remained constant. Every Sunday morning, Mother would roust us from our beds and hurry us through breakfast so we wouldn’t be late for Sunday school at Anglin Street Methodist. Daddy, claiming he was a Lutheran, stayed home. I tried suggesting that I might be a Lutheran, too, but Mother wasn’t buying it.

We usually had on some sort of a frilly dress with patent leather shoes. Black ones in the winter and white ones in the spring and summer. Mother would make sure she had cooked canned biscuits for breakfast on Sunday morning so she could use one of the raw biscuits to shine our patent leather shoes. This never seemed odd to us. We thought everyone shined his or her shoes with biscuits

Sunday school was a pretty fun place and I enjoyed the bible stories immensely. All those giants and sling shots, towers falling down, lions eating Christians, and the Red Sea parting on command.

Church, however, was another story. It was filled with grown-up big people: women were all paying close attention to the message and most of the men were nodding off or already snoring loudly. I had to sit within swatting reach of Mother.

Mother had two tactics besides smacking to get me to be quiet. She would give me her big, black leather bible and tell me to look at the pictures. Those were some pictures! Jesus standing in the temple when he was twelve was a favorite of mine. All of the words of Jesus were in red so I knew they were the most important.

When I got tired of looking at the Bible and began to squirm again, Mother would dig deep into her purse, pawing through the wadded up tissues, grocery store receipts and green stamps and usually manage to come up with a lint-covered Clorets breath mint or two. These were a funny green color and had a chalky texture. The taste was indescribable. Sort of a cross between a mint and a Tums. I could make one Clorets last a long time.

One of the highlights of the service was the singing. I especially like “Church in the Wildwood” where the men would sing “Oh, come, come, come …and then everyone else joined in. Other favorites were “Blest Be the Tie”, “Shall We Gather at the River?” and “In the Garden”. One of my favorite things today is sit knee to knee with a few friends and play the old hymns on fiddle, banjo, and guitar. If there’s someone around willing to belt them out, it is even better. It takes me right back to my childhood at Anglin Street Methodist Church, standing next to Mother and singing the old hymns at the top of my lungs.


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Joanne Sher 09/14/09
Lovely, fun reflections. Thanks for sharing your childhood Sundays with me.