Jan 19, 2000
When most Americans think of small towns, say Douglas Frantz and Catherine Collins, they think of churches: “Each of us carries a mental map of the perfect small town. Whether or not we are of religious temperament, this exercise in mental cartography invariably includes churches.” Frantz and Collins know whereof they speak. They have spent a lot of time pondering the nature of the perfect small town, having lived for a year with two of their children in Celebration, Florida, the town outside of Orlando developed by the Disney Corporation.
Making Room: Recovering Hospitality as a Christian Tradition, by Christine Pohl
My wife and I were visiting some old friends, a couple in their 80s whose health had been failing. At the time of our visit, the husband was confined to a wheelchair and was struggling with dementia. He was only intermittently able to participate in conversation, and he often had difficulty recognizing his wife. Her health was much better, though she has been showing signs of wearing down from her years of giving faithful, ongoing care to her husband.
Several years ago, when my husband’s engineering firm was between jobs, a pipe fitter named Richard came to live in the small log cabin just down the hill from our house. He could have stayed in a motel until he shipped out to the next job, or spent some time with his family back in Arkansas, but he took one look at the rocking chair on the porch facing Yonah Mountain and said, “I believe I’ll stay here.”