Friday, 10 September 2010

Harvest Festival Time

VICAR:

Well I can see that some of us are in splendid voice on this lovely Sunday morning.

Now… I must say how splendid your harvest festival display looks this year too with all those ageing tins of cheap creamed rice so neatly arranged around your hurriedly last minute remembered and dare I hopefully make the comment, complete and unopened, packet of Sainsbury’s economy chocolate biscuits? Exactly what you needed of course to hide that old reoccurring rusty tin of Tesco’s own baked beans in tomato sauce.

But that isn’t as good as it gets this year is it… Because surprisingly enough, some anonymous donor has even gone to a small tin of Lidl’s treacle pudding this year as well? And very nice it looks too I must admit… Well, what there is of it that is…

Now Mr. Johnson asked me at the beginning of our service this morning, why it is that this year, I have seen the need to lock our church doors while we’re all here inside God’s house together? Well as I explained then to Mr. Johnson, I have only taken this precaution for all of your own good. For health and safety reasons if you will.

You see, if you think back to this time last year Mr. Johnson, you may recall what happened when I tried to distribute those reoccurring tins of cheap Asda creamed rice to the pensioners of our congregation? Well you couldn’t have got out of here any quicker even if I’d have tried to take another collection! Not of course, that I’m actually in need of any more coat buttons you understand.

And Mr. Hargreaves. I see that you’re finally back here with us again? Splendid! Splendid! Congratulations on a full recovery are in order of course. But when you dashed out into the middle of the road like that last year Mr. Hargreaves, well… That bus driver just never saw your Zimmer frame coming. He had no chance at all did he?

Anyway, now that our church doors have been securely locked this time, I feel that after our service this morning, I can safely try again to distribute these ancient tins of Asda creamed rice pudding among you, without any of you this time at least, getting knocked down by a Nineteen bus on it’s way to Battersea garage.

And Mrs. Walker. I don’t know how you managed to get up onto that window ledge with your Zimmer frame again this year but please, can you carefully get down again now? That window was, after all, only locked for your own safety just as the doors were. We can’t take the risk of you jumping out of that window again this year now can we Mrs. Walker? Even though old Bert the gardener did make a full recovery back then.

Now… Can anyone guess what else we can do before I unlock those doors at the back this morning? No? Well I’ll tell you. I thought for once, that we could all stay behind for our final hymn and sing it together, rather than have the usual mass exodus worthy of any cinema audience before the National Anthem starts.. After which of course, as I say, I will make my usual endeavour to distribute tins ancient and modern, pardon the pun, of Asda creamed rice, among the pensioners of our little congregation…

Oh and Mrs. Davies, really. I can’t think how you could have possibly come by that pickaxe, but please try to refrain from tunnelling your way out with it during our last hymn.

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