View from the choir

I am a Catholic layperson and Secular Franciscan with a sense of humor. After years in the back pew watching, I have moved into the choir. It's nice to see faces instead of the backs of heads. But I still maintain God has a sense of humor - and that we are created in God's image.

Thursday, December 08, 2005

OFM revealed

I stopped home the night of the dinner to touch base with my wife and to have a snack. I wasn’t sure if there really was going to be a dinner.

I then drove into the city.

The address was in an older section of the city that once housed the homes of the almost rich who dreamed of owning mansions like those just a few blocks away.

Now, their homes housed offices, societies, and apartments.

The house at the address was typical. It had a long walk flanked by neatly trimmed bushes. The building was ivy covered. The windows and the door were framed by heavy stone casements. The wood of the door was a deep, rich brown. It was wider and taller than normal.

I rang the bell.

The door swung open. A tall, portly man greeted me enthusiastically.

“Come in, come in,” he bellowed jovially.

He shook my hand energetically. My hand disappeared into his.

“You are Mr. Strong, yes. Of course you are. I‘m Archibald Stout.”

I almost laughed.

His eyes twinkled.

“Yes,” he chuckled, “it’s a name that works.”

I wasn’t sure if I should say anything. He just smiled, then signaled for me to follow him.

“I expect you’ll want to meet the others. It will help you to decide.”

“Decide what?”

“Why, if you want to join us.”

“I don’t know who you are,” I said. “I don’t even know what OFM stands for.”

We stepped into an enormous dining room, and suddenly I had a sick feeling I knew what OFM stood for.

The room was full of men. Large men. Some would have qualified as giants.

All of them fat.

Fat men.

“Yes,” he laughed. “We are the Order of Fat Men. Some of us just refer to ourselves as the `Old Fat Men.’”

I felt – insulted, embarrassed, confused. I self-consciously touched my too-large stomach.

Then I spotted a man who looked familiar.

“I … he looks like G. K. Chesterton,” I said, not sure what else to say.

“He should. That is Gilbert.”

To be continued…


Blogger Julie D. said...

I am loving this story ...

3:08 PM  
Blogger Gilbert Keith Chesterton said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

5:49 PM  
Blogger Nancy C. Brown said...

Gilbert would have loved meeting with the old fat guys, and would have been singing and raising a glass of wine to those who can joyfully belly laugh!

Anxious to find out what happens next....

5:51 PM  
Blogger ~m2~ said...

oh, no they didn't.

i am hoping this has a santa-like ending...........

6:17 PM  

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