I am Shep Trenton and I have lived all my seventy-eight years in Trentonville, Missouri. IÕm married a ravinÕ beauty by the name of Lotte and weÕve been sittinÕ on the same porch swing since high school.
Trentonville was founded just after the Civil War by my great, great, Grand Pappy Shepard Trenton. He called it the ÒCity of MiraclesÓ, although there hasnÕt been a miracle in a mighty long time until now.
To tell the truth, Trentonville never been much of a city. WeÕre jest a small; sleepy town of 836 folks with more young people growinÕ up an leaving everÕ year then stays.
Now, donÕt get me wrong, Trentonville is a wonderful, good lookinÕ town thatÕs not too humid or buggy in the summer. We have two fine Baptist churches with a few Lutherans and atheists scattered about. We have five streets and two traffic lights and, as you can see, most of the buildinÕs are made out of brick and stone, most of which were built around the turn of the century.
Why Trentonville is so picturesque that they made a motorcycle movie hereabouts in Õ64, although I donÕt recall the name of it.
Things didnÕt start gettinÕ bad until they built the WalMart in Clawson in Õ98; thatÕs when the stores started closing and people began movinÕ away. Sure could have used a miracle back in Õ98, we surely could. Fact is, if it wasnÕt for bad luck, the good folks of Trentonville, would have no luck at all that is, until this thing last week.
I know you didnÕt come to town jest to here some old fool carry on so IÕll cut to the quick and tell you about what has got those BaptistÕs so riled up and singinÕ The Old Rugged Cross like Jesus was cominÕ to supper.
Now, what IÕm about to tell you is no rumor but GodÕs honest truth, Ôcause I got it straight from my niece Penny, a pharmacist, who works at the Trentonville Drugstore on the corner of Pike and 3rd. She saw it all and, believe you me, sheÕs a Baptist and some fired up about it.
It all started when Ms. Erica Sommers came to the drugstore last Saturday afternoon to have her prescription for anti-depressants filled. Penny was concerned, Ôcause sheÕs never seen Ms. Erica so nervous and jumpy before.
Ms. Erica, a divorcee from Vermont, bought the EvanÕs place out on County Road 18 back in May. SheÕs a handsome woman in her late thirties who works for a big law firm up in Clawson. SheÕs a mighty particular gal and doesnÕt talk much to folks around here.
Normally Penny would never say what kind of medicine folks is takinÕ Ôcause she is naturally tight lipped, but this here bit of information is important to the story. Anyways, Penny had to call about Ms. EricaÕs prescription so Ms. Erica took a seat next to Walter Anderson who was also waiting for his medicine.
Now, Walt is a sixtish man of few words and a better Baptist there never was, but he has never spoken to anyone about the Almighty that I can recall and I have know him his whole life. Well sir, ole Walt was jest sittinÕ there with his nose in his Bible as heÕs apt to most days, never payinÕ any mind to Ms. Erica until Penny comes out from behind the counter to talk to Ms. Erica then BANG! WaltÕs Bible hits the floor. HeÕs jest standing there starinÕ at Ms. Erica with his mouth open, face white and eyes all lit up.
Why Penny said he looked just like he had seen Jesus rising from the dead and, lestways, I guess he did! Then Walt starts crying and lookinÕ at Ms. Erica and now itÕs her turn, to look shocked.
Then real tender like, Walt reaches out and cradles Ms. EricaÕs upturned face in his big calloused, farmer hands and tells her how much God loves her, how much He cherishes her, and how He wouldnÕt want her to kill herself like she was planninÕ. Well sir, ole Walt spoke more words to that woman then PennyÕs heard out him her whole life.
Sunday morning, on my way to my favorite fishing spot, I passed the First Baptist Church of Trentonville and there was Ms. Erica and Walt climbing the stairs of the church together. Guess this ole town has one or two miracles left in it after all.
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