The Flock that Christendom Forgot:
An Animal Padre's Uphill Pilgrimage
Episode 14 - The Ways of God Are Wonderful!
My sojourn in Dewsbury - rather than be a maximum of two years,
previously promised by the bishop - was to last a full four! The fact
is, I was constantly at demos near and far and frequently rocking the
boat. Yet, apart from two specific incidents - this one involving the
ladies wearing fur, and the other, my sharing of a mission hall pulpit
with an acquaintance of decades past, lan Paisley of Belfast! - none
had appeared to outwardly criticize what I stood for. Indeed, many
proved a good deal sympathetic as well.
My heart truly warmed to
those people of Dewsbury, and I know they warmed to me as well. The
previous horror of my past desertion and subsequent divorce was never
brought up. Unknown to me, and before my arrival to the district, the
Dean in his compassion had already warned them that for anyone to do
so, would be over his dead body.
And then later, when Doreen came
on the scene - with a similar past heartache to my own - she was
welcomed most cordially by the whole Christian fellowship there. All
the clergy in the team encouraged my remarriage. Indeed, only the High
Anglicans of the outer area appeared to oppose it. As one of them
kindly said: "You've been married before. Father. It may be good to
take Doreen in as your housekeeper. The Romans frequently do that kind
of thing and their hierarchy is more understanding that ours! - But,
of course, you'll understand: marriage itself is out!"
- to be continued
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