Century Marks

Bad table manners: When Samuel Wells was the vicar of a small Anglican church in a marginal neighborhood, a gang of surly adolescents burst into the church one Sunday as the Eucharist was being celebrated. While the congregation looked on in horror, the youths stood before the altar and their leader demanded, “Are you going to give us some of that?” Wells responded: “If you look behind you, you will see a small group of people who are here to do the most important thing in their lives. I don’t think this is the most important thing in your life. I hope it may become so one day. But for now, I suggest you wait outside until we’ve finished, and then we’ll have a chat about what things are really important and how we learn how to do them.” Amazingly, the rowdy boys complied, and stayed for the conversation (The Blackwell Companion to Christian Ethics, edited by Wells and Stanley Hauerwas; a review of this book is forthcoming).


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