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One summer night in the late 1950s, when church was a more serious, formal occasion and the "Reverends" wore black tie and tails when preaching, my brothers persuaded our mother to let us sit in the back row of church. Since our designated pew was third row from the front, this was a big deal.

As the service wore on, my brothers started to fidget, and during the long prayer they began to poke each other. Suddenly the reverend interrupted his prayer and said, "Will the two young boys in the back row please behave." In unison my brothers replied, "OK, Grandpa."

Thus ended the prayer.
—Ruth E. Monsma

Recently my husband and I attended a diabetes education class. In this class we discussed changes we encounter dealing with disease and/or aging. Larry, one of the men in the group, shared the following with us: "When I get up in the morning I first jog my memory. Then I jump to conclusions. Finally, I'm ready to run from my problems."
—Wilma A. Tiemeyer

The activities director at the nursing home asked the residents what card game they would like to play. No one seemed to be paying much attention, so I (the chaplain) joked, "We could always play a game of strip poker." Elderly Madge, who had been sitting quietly with her eyes closed, suddenly piped up, "We can't play strip poker! It's way too cold for that!"--Wick Hubers

A Sunday school teacher said to his children, "We've been learning how powerful kings and queens were in Bible times. But there is a higher power. Can anyone tell me what it is?"

One child shouted, "Aces!"
—George Vander Weit

Our 4- and 5-year-old grandchildren, Drew and Elise, came home from Bible school one day with three goldfish in a cup. Mommy put them in a bowl, not expecting them to survive long. Drew named them after his favorite Star Wars characters.

The following morning one was floating belly up. Elise didn't show much concern, but Drew felt bad. Daddy suggested they send it to goldfish heaven. So they put it in the toilet, said goodbye, and gave it a flush. Drew stood there a moment, then asked, "When I go to heaven, will I fit through there?"
—Shirley VanEerden

I went to a rally in downtown Port-au-Prince that was being sponsored by some Americans from the Southern states. Since they spoke only English, they needed everything translated into Creole by a Haitian. During their introduction one woman who was part of the group screamed into the microphone, "Hallelujah!"--safe in any language. She then wanted to say "Blessed be the Lord" in Creole, which is "Beni swa letenel." Instead she shouted, with a great Southern accent, "Benny swallowed the nail!"
—Dave Gebben

On the first day of school, a first-grader handed his teacher a note from his mother. It read, "The opinions expressed by this child are not necessarily those of his parents."
—Herm Kelderman

Bulletin Blunders

The Fasting & Prayer conference includes meals.

The church held a going-away party for the pastor. The congregation was anxious to give him a little momentum.

Please drop off diapers, size 3, at the Saint Raphael's parish office during regular office hours for Sister Jane.

—Don Oppewal, Joyful Noiseletter/RNS

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