When a person gets old there is so much “past.”
I’ve always been a “future” kinda gal. My cowboy ( like the cattle, horses, and dogs he cares for) lives in the “present.” But last night I connected with part of my ” past” and today I mourn a lost love. I’m glad I have here to write and clarify in my own mind this ache in my heart. So I guess this post is really for me .
For many years I took my little girls and sometimes reluctant cowboy husband to worship at very small church in little village, the same village where my children went to school from Kindergarten to Grade 12. We lived in that area a long time, a long time ago.
Sunday the powers-that-be announced that the little church would be closed, the few remaining members moved to congregations in a bigger centre. Those of us that were close enough were invited to a little farewell potluck supper for the little yellow brick church. I and my youngest daughter and youngest grandson went. The notice was short and so many weren’t there.
It was a happy affair with so many hugs from old friends and remarkably grownup younger folks I had taught in that little church. There just aren’t words to express the depth of my feeling for the people there.
But it was the building itself that made me cry. There isn’t one square inch of it that doesn’t hold some precious, precious memory for me. So these pictures won’t mean much to you, but they mean the world to me.
This was the little library that housed all the materials for the teachers, you see it here with some of the dearest-to-me people in it. I taught that tall young man, now with 3 children of his own and especially loved his mom and dad shown there, good, good people, not fancy but good to bone.
The kitchen, that often had to double as a classroom, as immaculate as ever, kept clean by whoever used it. And it was used often. The woman in centre makes the best buns in the whole world. My sensitive youngest daughter told me last night how special this lady was to her; how she always tried to make sure that shy little girl was alright. I remember being in a teacher’s (as in Sunday School teacher) meeting in the kitchen where the leader asked us to tell of our best accomplishment and one of the ladies said: “6 children in 8 years” and looking at her grown up children now (there are 8), she was right.
There was no real Chapel, just one big all-purpose room, here set up to feed the small crowd. It looks back to the blackboard in front of which I stood every school morning for 3 years and once a week for another year teaching early morning religion class to a group of 14 to 18 year olds (as many as 28 one year). I wanted them to see how tall Goliath actually was so I drew a picture on paper of the 9 foot tall man and in trying to stand on the piano bench to tape him up on the wall I fell before class, conked my head, and had to go to the emergency.
It was in that class room I taught a really special young man from another church who used to get up at 5 AM, deliver newspaper, then walk to this little church all the cold dark winter long (fall and spring too)to participate in my class in learning about the Old and New testament for two years. Our church’s kid were good to him.
We held parties, and exercise classes, cubs/scout meetings, youth activities, talent shows, even dances in that multi-purpose room. One time they had a game where you were supposed to stand on one leg bend over and pick up a paper bag with your teeth. It was hard for everyone except my cowboy who had the rules carefully explained to him a second time before he stood on one leg, took out his dentures and easily picked up the bag with his teeth. I still remember the shocked looks and the laughter.
There was a small closet in the hall that people who had bought uplifting books and read them could then donate them and we could all take them out and read them. My daughter said she remembered the paper on the shelf from when she was a little girl.
Wierd, I know, but even the furnace room has happy memories. They have since changed it for the better but long ago there used to be a comfy rocker in there where you could quietly nurse your baby. The building really is very small.
It was late when we left by my daughter wanted to do this one last thing and swing her son around and around on the front lawn of the church because she has swung so many of the younger kids there just like that.
I bet you thought when you read the title it would be about some old romantic involvement of mine and not about a building. But it is about love and I will dearly miss the thought of being able to go back to worship as I believe in that little old church that holds so much of my past.