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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Asia (02/26/09)

TITLE: Watchman Neil
By Melanie Kerr


Incident Report: 02/03/09 Hilton/Milton Area Office

Time: 8.30 am.

Present at Interview: PC Martins, PC Galbraith and the accused Neil Watchman

Recorded for the purposes of training? No

PC Martins and PC Galbraith responded to a call at 6.30 am. The caller was a Mrs Abrahams of 24, Cook Avenue. She reported that a youth was trying to break into a number of cars in the car parking space opposite her home.

On arrival at the scene, the youth was apprehended. PC Galbraith gave the cars an initial inspection and reported that there didn’t appear to be any signs of tampering. PC Galbraith also made mention that there was something unusual about the windscreens of the cars nearest the intersection of Cook Avenue and MacIntosh Road.

The youth, Neil Watchman was taken to the Hilton/Milton Area office for questioning.

The contents in his pockets were noted and bagged.

1 set of house keys
I pencil
1 stick of chewing gum
1 used football stadium ticket stub
Coins to the value of £3.57p
I surprisingly clean handkerchief
1 mobile phone
1 pocket sized edition of the New Testament (New International Version)
1 car windscreen scraper
1 tin of de-icer

We read Neil Watchman (15) his rights, reminding him that he had the right to remain silent. We also gave him the chance to call a lawyer, which he refused. The phone-call he was given was made to a Pastor Jonathan Frost.

When asked to account for his actions, Watchman repeated a story he had heard in church. The story can’t be substantiated seeing as the person mentioned in the story is deceased, but Galbraith accessed the internet and the details are recorded on a 573,790 different pages.

Watchman told us about one Watchman Nee, born Nee Shu-Tsu in Fowchow in China. He was listed as being a teacher, preacher, missionary in China and he author of many books.

In one of his sermons, Watchman Nee, made reference to a fellow Chinese believer who lived in China, in the rural part of the country where there are rice fields. Each morning he spent a lot of time pumping water from the river to his rice field at the top of the hill. Returning to the field, later on in the day, he discovered that a neighbour had opened the sluice gates and all the water drained out of the top field, into his neighbour’s field. This lack of neighbourly love was maintained for a week or two and the Chinese believer asked politely for the neighbour to stop. PC Galbraith was heard to utter a mild expletive at this point, and graphically described what he would have done to the neighbour. I reminded him that we were in the presence of a minor.

As he was getting nowhere arguing with the neighbour, the Chinese believer took it upon himself to do something. He rose an hour earlier and pumped the water up to his own field, and then pumped up the water to his neighbour’s field.

PC Galbraith asked Watchman what the story had to do with his breaking into cars at 6.30 in the morning.

Watchman insisted that he hadn’t broken into any cars. Pastor Jonathan Frost had challenged them at church on Sunday to think of ways that the congregation could serve their neighbours in the spirit of Watchman Nee. There was a definite tone of sarcasm (not in the spirit of Watchman Nee in PC Galbraith’s opinion stated later) that in the absence of rice fields, Watchman needed to be a little more creative in thinking how he could serve his neighbours.

The heavy frost provided the opportunity. Watchman purchased the windscreen wiper and the tin of de-icer from a local supermarket. (Till receipt produced as proof of purchase). He says he set his alarm for 5.30 am. His intentions were to clear the windscreens of ice before proceeding to school for the rest of the day.

PC Galbraith was heard to utter a second expletive and admitted to being an idiot for not seeing it sooner. The windscreens had been cleared of ice.

Watchman was released without charge.

PC Galbraith was heard to say that he preferred kids to just hang around street corners.

PC Martins has asked permission to have Sunday off. He would quite like to go to church and find out more about people like Watchman Nee and those he inspired like Watchman Neil…oops Neil Watchman.

The opinions expressed by authors may not necessarily reflect the opinion of FaithWriters.com.
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This article has been read 1517 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Karlene Jacobsen03/05/09
Watchman Nee-er I mean Neil- had his heart in the right place, although misinterpreted at first. This was fun to read.
Norma-Anne Hough03/06/09
Good story
Sharon Kane03/08/09
This is the 2nd story I've read today about "Actions speak louder than words". What a great story and a good witness: once it was understood!
I thought it would have been more powerful if the neighbours had been somehow causing trouble for Watchman Neil, but maybe this is a true story and you didn't want to embellish the truth?
I enjoyed reading and it leaves me thinking, what can I do this week to make a difference in someone's life?
Lynda Schultz 03/08/09
Terrific story. I haven't heard Watchman Nee's name for a while—glad his spirit is still alive and well.
Joanne Sher 03/10/09
Clever piece - and I love the format. Wonderful story.
Lyn Churchyard03/11/09
Very different take on the topic... inventive! I liked the 'dull police report' style of writing too. LOL you also confirmed the old adage that the British Bobby does a wonderful job... even if it is only telling the correct time. Very well done!
Beth LaBuff 03/11/09
I'd heard of Watchman Nee before. I love how you created this story. This is so good!
Gerald Shuler 03/11/09
The second part of this witness story is when Neil finally gets to school late and has to explain his tardiness to the principal. Then Watchmen Nee will also be in a school record. Well conceived story.
Peter Stone03/12/09
Oh, very clever. Got some large clues from the things found in his pockets.
1 car windscreen scraper
1 tin of de-icer
Watching the cops take so long to figure it out was fun.