Sunday, 29 January 2012

Capers with the Collie and Curates with capes - be prepared!

Today started at 05.15 am when I was woken by one of the dogs banging on the the double doors downstairs. It had to be The Collie causing the trouble because Jem The Lakeland, just barks until someone appears. I lay listening, trying to work out what he was doing. He would bang the doors so they rattled then stop.Then he would start again. As The Curate had the early service, I thought I had better go and investigate. The Collie could see we had left the sitting room light on (by mistake) and having decided we were in there, he thought the day needed to begin! I let him out of the backdoor and stood waiting for him to return. I waited and waited - no dog. So at 5.30 I went out in bare feet and not much else, to try and persuade him to come back indoors. He went down on his front paws and laughed at me, challenging me to come further out and play with him. Hmmmm!

 The curate went off to do the early service and he arrived back later than usual as he had been chatting. He sat down to breakfast, assuring me that the next service wasn't until 11.o'clock. So I browsed through the papers while he reread his sermon. You know what's coming - we arrived at the church to find a good number of cars. 

'No bells' I commented. 
'That's because we are early.' replied The Curate.
Glancing at the notice board I said, 'It says here that the service starts at 10.30' 

The Curate then flew up the church path, wondering if the hymn being sung was the first or the third! I made a quiet entrance after him and slid into a pew.
I'd like to say things got better from that point but, unfortunately this wasn't the case. The Curate made a good start. The rhythms of the liturgy had a calming effect and he picked up the service with skill. We sang, we prayed and we listened to the readings - so did The Curate. The readings were not the ones he was expecting  or the ones he had based his sermon around! In other circumstances, he would have checked with the readers before the service. When he was a Methodist Local preacher (before Anglican days) he was expected to make contact with the church before the service and confirm readings and music. This was very good practice and one that The Curate will be remembering in future! The sermon was shorter than usual but I don't think anyone minded. Fortunately they are a lovely congregation, and they have allowed The Curate to find his feet and any mistakes are forgiven.
Is it raining? I need my cape in a bag!!

The last people to leave the church were able to witness The Curate's second photo shoot for the  Ultimate Clergy Cape. This time he was trying out a light weight fold away cape. He is not a good model when people are watching - but it caused a laugh! 
By the time we arrived at the local pub, we were more than ready for the excellent lunch served there. 


  1. Oh so funny! A friend told me that when playing the organ, the Vicar was late so she started the first hymn while he was flying up the isle. It was "Rise up o men of God ,the church awaits you."

  2. That was quite the day, Harriet! from frollicking collies to the modeling curate. Well, your life is NOT dull!!

  3. Oops, Harriet, you've just described every cleric's nightmare. Glad The Curate got through it unscathed. I bet lunch tasted good...

  4. Great post. I had a bit of a chuckle.

  5. Oooh Harriet, have just got to the final chapters of the book. A bit fundamentalist and parts I definately disagree with but still a helpful insight.

  6. Hi Tootallburd - What book would that be?.......! Glass of wine after work has left me brainless!!

  7. Enjoyed this post and the interesting surprises to daily life. I liked you mentioning how your dog laughed at you. Wishing you joy.

  8. OH, yes. Late for Morning Worship. Sin unforgivable. Well, something like that (depending on the congregation).

    Don't think I've ever been late. But I do have a selective memory.