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All Creatures of Our God And King XXXIX

BudLiteGood morning, y’all. We all wait with baited breath while The Donald picks a VP candidate that won’t show him up for being the fool that he is. It’s a small list, as one could imagine. Unfortunately, Justice Ginsburg has shined her light on The Donald and drawn criticism for it. Like we didn’t know what Scalia thought of President Obama. Of course that’s different, racism is acceptable to the right wing, reason is not.

Speaking of reason brings us back to the retelling of The Full Gospel Original Church of God. Sunday’s service was not only packed to the gills, it was packed beyond description. Standing room only included the porch of the church with the late arrivals peeking through the doors to get a glimpse of Reverend Helena Handbasket. She did not disappoint.

The Reverend was wearing pure white robes that made her hair look like the flame on top of a candle. Her voice was never more pure as she led the choir through their program. In the absence of Ophelia Bottoms, Reverend Handbasket jumped back and forth between the choir and the pulpit. The Reverend was conducting every aspect of the service. When the Testament of Faith and altar call were made, the aisles filled rapidly with people pressing forward towards the Reverend.

Whether the initiates were feeling the call to Jesus, or just the need for more breathing room was not knowable. Elder Cheatum watched from his spot at the back of the church and felt a pang of guilt. The head counts from week to week were indicating that this day would come if the Reverend’s popularity continued. It was just hoped that they had more time. Clearly they had run out of time. In addition to fire safety issues, there was also the possibility that there were people being pushed a lot closer to venomous snakes than they intended. Before the benediction, Elder Cheatum went to his place at the front door and texted his partner Alvin Wiley. “Get those trailers here ASAP, cost is not an object,” the text read.

As the crowds left the church, the word “magical” was heard over and over. Occasionally there was a reference to “spirit filled”, but for the most part the description was “magical”. Elder Cheatum didn’t know what to make of that turn of events. This was not Siegfried and Roy. While he appreciated the large crowds, he did not want his church to become a carnival attraction. The Elder resolved to do what he could to make sure the message was delivered in the right context, and decided to discuss the matter with Reverend Handbasket that day.

Unfortunately, the Reverend escaped before the Elder could approach her. Reverend Helena was headed back to her home in Ellijay to gather her belongings. The Reverend would be moving into the rectory at the end of the week and was taking the week off to make the move. It was perceived that the eviction of the Bread’s from the rectory would be easier on everyone if Reverend Handbasket was not in sight. Alva Bread had already proven herself to be a vengeful woman. The Elders could not speculate how Alva Bread would react to Reverend Handbasket trying to move in as she was moving out.

The first trailer arrived Monday morning. The Elders were able to outfit the single wide trailer to the side of the main building with a lot of help from a lot of volunteers. All concerned agreed that it was an abomination, but they had to do something to make room for the overflow crowds. The new setup required some specialized carpentry, but they were able to get the job done in six days.

Being able to wrap up the work in time for the Sunday service was perceived by all as a good omen. The trailer added seating for about a hundred more worshipers, and an oddly placed bathroom. The Elders did a walk around of the new space on Saturday about lunch time.

“We needed that extra bathroom indoors,” said Elder Diggum as he returned from his inspection of the new plumbing addition. “I’m just concerned that the proximity of the trailer bathroom to the auditorium might create some odd moments.”

“Hopefully, the crowd will be so enthused from start to finish that the sound of people praising the Lord will drown out any inappropriate noises”, said Elder Wiley. “I think they did a right fine job of getting everything to match up.”  “What do you think, Buster?” he said as he turned to Elder Cheatum.

“I think there’s no amount of lipstick that can be thrown on this pig to make it look presentable, but we don’t have a better option right now”, Elder Cheatum said as he banged his palm against the external wall of the trailer checking for structural integrity. “What’d we pay for this thing?” He asked.

“Three grand for the trailer, five hundred for the haul, everything else was donated.” Elder Wiley responded.

“Ok, here’s what I want you to do” Elder Cheatum said to Elder Diggum. “I want you to go buy the biggest, cheapest big screen TV you can find and a good digital camera.” “Then we’re going to install the camera in the ceiling about mid way back in the auditorium.”

Elder Cheatum pointed at the wall separating the new seating area and the bathroom. “Mount the TV on that wall so the folks sitting in the trailer will have a good view of the show at all times.” “If you need to hire a geek to make it work, do it, you have my blessing.”

“Amen to the geek”, Elder Diggum said. “You all want to do lunch first?”

“No, I need to do some errands and make some calls,” said Elder Cheatum. “The Bread brood has ended up at Mulva’s trailer park and I understand it’s causing some discord.” “I thought I would check in with the Breads, and the Lites, and see if I can smooth the troubled waters.”

“I’ll come with”, Elder Wiley said to Elder Diggum. “I hate to miss an opportunity to look at the latest gadgets.”

“Looks like Reverend Helena is getting moved in ok”, Elder Diggum said as they walked to their cars.

“Yeah, I wonder who that ol’ boy is that’s helping her with the boxes”, said Elder Cheatum as he nodded towards the Uhaul truck and the six foot four Adonis carrying a five drawer dresser into the house by himself.

“I don’t know, but I’d like to know if he’s got any eligibility left.”, responded Elder Wiley. “Georgia’s needing tight ends this year.”

“I think I’ll go ask”, said Elder Cheatum, “We don’t need anymore surprises this year.”

Elder Cheatum was surprised to find that Reverend Handbasket’s helper was her twin brother. And, “no”, he didn’t have any eligibility left.

Elder Cheatum was more than just a little amused to find himself grinning as he drove towards the TackyToo Trailer Park. Tomorrow was shaping up to be an absolutely blessed day. What could go wrong?

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