Okay, remember the encounter with the gentleman who inspired a previous post entitled “White Hair Walking” vis-a-vis assumptions about people with white hair walking to perform downtown errands re: group home resident,etc.???????
Well, surprise, surprise, that happened on a Wednesday at mid-day!!
Now check out the Gospel according to St. Matthew, Chapter 22, verses 1-14. Yours truly was asked to give the Sunday evening vesper devotional talk this week. Yours truly based it on the prescribed Gospel lectionary reading for that date. Notice who kind of folks ultimately are invited and actually attending the king’s son’s wedding feast. Whatcha wanna bet those folks were all traveling on foot?
Now, there seems to be a suspiciously money-changers-in-the-temple possibility in the history of little Southern towns in the good ol’ US of A regarding shutting down the exchange of monies in time for people to get “properly” prepared to attend mid-week church activities. Except this tradition would almost be in reverse of money-changers in the temple, would it not? Maybe not! Maybe all the good bankers and business folk, even doctors and lawyers, accountants,etc. feel getting people “right with the Lord” again will cause them to be:
1) Less selfish when shopping on Thursday?
2) More concious of seeing their doctor for a new examination on whatever they placed in the prayer requests on Wednesday night?
3) More consious of seeing their lawyer to get their “final affairs” in order after reading about Heaven and Hell on Wednesday night?
4) More honest when shopping and/or banking on Thursday,Friday,Saturday?
5) More pleased to conform to all the local conventions of their locale in the Bible Belt?
In my childhood, the churches served as the strongest and cheapest means of preserving not only the public good, but the status quo, which seemed to help the money changers just a whole lot in the long run!
Am I being cynical? Don’t think so. As Flannery O’Connor explained, Southern church folks value propriety much more than Christianity.
And, of course, it is improper for a Southern white-haired lady to carry her own shopping bags, walking from store to store, leaving her car parked in a central parking lot. I mean, it does the gas station, the auto mechanics, etc. out of some “money-changing”, does it not?
Stay tuned for further lambasting of the senior citizen life in a small SouthernUSA town re: having the nerve to be a writer and artist: is there really any money in that, great-grandpa asked the student headed off to that un-heard of college in the heathen North (or West!), or even just out-of-state. I mean, goodness gracious, they aren’t even in “our” football conference!