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      Nurturing people in the image of God since 1868.                                                                          POB 397/520 Dry Creek Rd./Smithville, TN

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A Father Who Won’t Affirm

Garrison Keillor writes: The town ball club was the Lake Wobegon Schroeders, so named because the starting nine were brothers, sons of E. J. Schroeder. E. J. was not pleased if a boy hit a bad pitch. He'd spit and curse and rail at him. And if a son hit a home run, E. J. would say, "Blind man coulda hit that one. Your gramma coulda put the wood on that one. If a guy couldn't hit that one out, there'd be something wrong with him, I'd say. Wind practically took that one out of here, didn't even need to hit it much"—and lean over and spit.

So his sons could never please him, and if they did, he forgot about it. Once, against Freeport, his oldest boy, Edwin Jim, Jr., ran to the center field fence for a long, long, long fly ball. He threw his glove forty feet in the air to snag the ball and caught the ball and glove.

When he turned toward the dugout to see if his dad had seen it, E. J. was on his feet clapping, but when he saw the boy look to him, he immediately pretended he was swatting mosquitoes. The batter was called out, the third out.

Jim ran back to the bench and stood by his dad. E. J. sat chewing in silence and finally said, "I saw a man in Superior, Wisconsin, do that a long time ago. But he did it at night, and the ball was hit a lot harder."

—Garrison Keillor, We Are Still Married (Penguin, 1990)

"Comfort yourselves together, and edify one another, even as also ye do." -1 Thessalonians 5:11

via House to House, Volume 11, Number 6, Pages 4