A Thirteen Year-Old Opines on Christmas

The thirteen year-old was me, and I wrote this for the Palm Beach Day School’s student newspaper the Portfolio Flyer, Volume II Issue X dated 18 December 1968:

1,972 years in the past, in a little Israeli town called Bethlehem, probably one of the most important events in the history of the world occurred.  Mary and Joseph had inquired of the local innkeeper as to the number of rooms for rent.  Unfortunately, there were no rooms.  They went to the outskirts of the town and found a manger.  There, Mary had a baby whom she named Jesus.

Jesus grew up in Nazareth.  He preached his message of love and compassion to all his fellow men.  But the existing status quo disliked his preaching so they nailed him to the cross.

Today, many people disregard his teachings as obsolete and out of date.  This thesis is incorrect.  For the teachings of the Lord were not meant for about 1500 years, but for all eternity.

There’s a lot to unpack with this, but probably the biggest lacuna is the lack of any reference to the resurrection.  Some of that is due to space limitations: the Flyer was packed, that’s all the space I got, probably had to cut it down considerably.  But another reason was that, either in spite of the fact that I was raised at Bethesda or because of it, I was unclear as to the bodily resurrection of Jesus.  That would have to wait 3 1/2 years until I read Augustine’s City of God, and by then I was on my way to a Tiber swim.

Really, though, the fact that Our Lord bucked the “existing status quo” was a strong reason for me to follow him, and that’s something that hasn’t changed.

Anglican Tidbit: Bulletin for the Third Sunday in Advent

Another bulletin from Bethesda-by-the-Sea Episcopal Church, this time from 1965:

  • As usual, the 1928 BCP/1940 Hymnal was being used.
  • Holy Communion was at 0800 and 0900 but not at 1100. Generally for the latter two services it was done once a month.
  • The Rector was Robert Appleyard, who went on to be Bishop of Pittsburgh and performed the first two authorised ordinations of women in the Episcopal Church the following decade.
  • Question for long-term readers of this blog: note the baptismal announcement on the first page. There are several things that are “funny” about this, care to note them?
  • St. Mary’s Guild (also announced on the first page) was the guild my mother was a member of. In 1967 their confrontation with the Vestry led to starting the Church Mouse, Palm Beach’s premier resale shop.

Anglican Tidbit: Bulletin for the Twenty-Third Sunday After Trinity

Another Anglican Tidbit, in this case the bulletin from Bethesda-by-the-Sea Episcopal Church for the Twenty-Third Sunday after Trinity, 1968.

Some interesting notes:

  • The liturgy is 1928 BCP/1940 Hymnal, for those of you who are looking for help in using this for current liturgical practice.
  • The two main services are Morning Prayer (they also had Evening Prayer as noted,) the only celebration of the Holy Communion was at 0800. So much for “Communion every Sunday,” at least at this point.
  • The bulletin notes the induction of several acolytes into the Order of St. Peter, whose “manual” is here. For me it was, in some ways, too late in the game: I was regularly at Bethesda for less than a year after the induction before going away to prep school.
  • The emphasis on Jamaica–and the mission thereto–is interesting to me personally because I ended up in a church which is very big in Jamaica, and not only on the island but in immigrant communities in the U.S., Canada and the U.K. How they rolled the Anglican Church of the West Indies would be an interesting study; it’s too bad that my high school chaplain, who spent time in the Caribbean, didn’t give much thought to this.

The Joys of Bitter Lemon — Chet Aero Marine

I grew up in a family of serious drinkers, which goes back a long way, as my grandfather’s involvement in this should attest. That meant that we had a stocked bar in the house (it wasn’t a “wet bar” in the sense that it had a sink, but it was stocked all the same.) At […]

via The Joys of Bitter Lemon — Chet Aero Marine

An old Zenith Colour Television Broadcasts the Assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King

Just about every television I grew up with was a Zenith.  So I was intrigued when I saw this video of a Zenith colour “roundie.”  We had one in our family room in Palm Beach (I’m not sure whether it was this exact model but it was close.)

The sample broadcast he chose is riveting, especially these days: Walter Cronkite’s report of the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King on 4 April 1968.   I doubt we watched CBS (we were NBC, Huntley-Brinkley types) but we certainly watched the reports of this.  It’s interesting to hear Dr. King evoke the Bill of Rights in his speech the night before he was killed; now so many consider those rights to be part of the problem.

I’ve cued up the video to that broadcast; if you’re interested in the technical aspects of the Zenith he’s looking at, just run it back to the start.

Our own roundie went on to transmit other tumultuous events of the time, including the Watergate Hearings, as you can see below in photos from its tube.  (I’ve got recordings from that here and here.  I cropped these close, but you can see the rounding in the corners.)

Guatemala, Then and Now — Chet Aero Marine

One of the things I’ve learned in the many years I’ve worked on this site is that my family has a habit of following in the wake of its ancestors, even if the followers were reluctant to admit it. Our trips to the Bahamas were in the wake of Chet’s SPA trips; our moving to […]

via Guatemala, Then and Now — Chet Aero Marine

The General Thanksgiving — Chet Aero Marine

Of all the prayers we used to pray from the 1928 Book of Common Prayer at Bethesda, probably my favourite was what the Prayer Book called “A General Thanksgiving,” but I normally attached the definite article to it. It’s especially appropriate now and here it is: Almighty God, Father of all mercies, we, thine unworthy […]

via The General Thanksgiving — Chet Aero Marine

Appeal for the Abaco Islands, and Mercy Chefs — Chet Aero Marine

Readers of this blog will know that my family goes back a long way visiting the Bahamas in general and the Abaco Islands in particular. We had some exciting times, almost sending our ship to the bottom and riding out a storm. This beautiful paradise, which looked like this when we visited: Now looks like […]

via Appeal for the Abaco Islands, and Mercy Chefs — Chet Aero Marine

Remembering the Anti-Moon Luddites — Chet Aero Marine

Today, of course, is the fiftieth anniversary of Neil Armstrong’s first steps on the moon–“one giant leap for mankind,” to be sure. It was a great accomplishment and deserves to be remembered. It’s easy to forget, however, that at the time there were many–especially on the left–who believed that the whole enterprise was a mistake, […]

via Remembering the Anti-Moon Luddites — Chet Aero Marine

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