Man-in-the-Moon Marigolds

In the middle of the summer he froze

in the pulpit just as he was expounding

on the play “The Effect of Gamma Rays

on Man-in-the-Moon Marigolds” and its

relation to the lectionary Gospel reading

for the day in common time.  It was any-

thing but common for him or for the con-

gregation. Concerned elders escorted the

catatonic preacher from the pulpit to the

hospital. He was a man consumed with

preaching the Realm of God with all its

social justice implications.  He was a

prophet, but he was also a priest who

ached for his people and held their hands

and shed tears with them over the years.

Many in the pews had looked daggers at

him for his courage and one day after many,

many Sundays of seeing those faces from

the pulpit, he felt zapped like a marigold

and just froze. Months later he re-entered

the pulpit and finished the meaning of the

illustration of  “The Effect of Gamma Rays

on Man-in-the-Moon Marigolds” in relation

to the lectionary Gospel reading of a few

months before. He veered off the lection-

ary course, but he had something to finish

for that particular day about the value and

endurance of Man-in-the-Moon Marigolds.

In Mexico marigolds are the flower of choice for

El Dia De Los Muertos because they bloom in

November.  In this particular November, it was

for a resurrection not a celebration of the dead.

When he said amen and sat down, the choir

stood and sang before the offering was taken,

as usual.

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