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according to Garrison

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  • Bob Caldwell
    Rather long but worth the read. Bob _________________________________________________________ SINGING WITH THE LUTHERANS according to Garrison Keillor I have
    Message 1 of 1 , Apr 30, 2002
      Rather long but worth the read. Bob
      _________________________________________________________

      SINGING WITH THE LUTHERANS
      according to Garrison Keillor

      I have made fun of Lutherans for years-who wouldn't if you lived
      in Minnesota? But I have also sung with Lutherans and that is
      one of the main joys of life, along with hot baths and fresh
      sweet corn. We make fun of Lutherans for their blandness, their
      excessive calm, their fear of giving offense, their constant
      guilt that burns like a pilot light, their lack of speed and also
      for their secret fondness for macaroni and cheese. But nobody
      sings like them.

      If you ask an audience in New York City, a relatively
      "Lutheranless" place, to sing along on the chorus of "Michael Row
      the Boat Ashore" they will look daggers at you as if you had
      asked them to strip to their underwear. But if you do this among
      Lutherans they'll smile and row that boat ashore and up on the
      beach! And down the road! Lutherans are bred from childhood to
      sing in four-part harmony. It's a talent that comes from sitting
      on the lap of someone singing alto or tenor or bass and hearing
      the harmonic intervals by putting your little head against that
      person's ribcage.

      It's natural for Lutherans to sing in harmony. We're too modest
      to be soloists, too worldly to sing in unison. When you're
      singing in the key of C and you slide into the A7th and D7th
      chords, all two hundred of you, it's an emotionally fulfilling
      moment. I once sang the bass line of "Children of the Heavenly
      Father" in a room with about three thousand Lutherans in it; and
      when we finished we all had tears in our eyes, partly from the
      promise that God will not forsake us, partly from the proximity
      of all those lovely voices. By our joining in harmony, we
      somehow promise that we will not for sake each other.

      I do believe this people, these Lutherans, who love to sing in
      four-part harmony are the sort of people you could call up when
      you're in deep distress. If you're dying, they'll comfort you.
      If you're lonely, they'll talk to you. And if you're hungry,
      they'll give you tuna salad!

      If you laughed while reading this you must be a Lutheran :-)
      The following list was compiled by a 20th century Lutheran who,
      observing other Lutherans, wrote down exactly what he saw or
      heard:
      1) Lutherans believe in prayer but would practically die if asked
      to pray out loud.
      2) Lutherans like to sing except when confronted with a new hymn
      or a hymn with more than four stanzas.
      3) Lutherans believe their pastors will visit them in the
      hospital even if they don't notify them that they are there.
      4) Lutherans usually follow the official liturgy and will feel it
      is their way of suffering for their sins.
      5) Lutherans believe in miracles and even expect miracles,
      especially during their stewardship visitation programs or when
      passing the plate.
      6) Lutherans feel that applauding for their children's choirs
      would make them too proud and conceited.
      7) Lutherans think that the Bible forbids them from crossing the
      aisle while "passing the peace."
      8) Lutherans drink coffee as if it were the Third Sacrament.
      9) Some Lutherans still believe that an ELCA bride and an LCMS
      groom make for a mixed marriage. (or an ELCA groom and WELS
      bride?)
      10) Lutherans feel guilty for not staying to clean up after their
      own wedding reception in the Fellowship Hall.
      11) Lutherans are willing to pay up to a dollar for a meal at
      church.
      12) Lutherans think that Garrison Keeler stories are totally
      factual.
      13) Lutherans still serve Jell-O in the proper liturgical color
      for the season and think that peas in a tuna noodle casserole
      adds too much color.
      14) Lutherans believe that it is OK to poke fun at themselves and
      never take themselves too seriously.
      And finally, you know when you're a Lutheran when
      *You hear something really funny during the sermon and smile as
      loudly as you can!
      * It's 100 degrees, with 90% humidity, and you still have coffee
      after the service.
      * Doughnuts are a line item in the church budget, just like
      coffee.
      *The communion cabinet is open to all, but the coffee cabinet is
      locked up tight.
      *All your relatives graduated from a school named Concordia (or
      Luther).
      * When you watch a "Star Wars" movie and they say, "May the Force
      be with you," you respond, "and also with you."
      *You actually understand those folks from Lake Wobegon, MN.
      * And lastly, it takes ten minutes to say "good-bye."


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