Wow… things in the past are quite fascinating, when seen through the lens of many years.
Though I’ve been citified for quite awhile, I’m actually Country Folk from a way back. My mom was raised on a farm, and my dad’s family was very outdoors-y–his parents started a boys & girls club when they were stationed in the Yukon (Canadian Forces), and they did a lot of camping. Later my dad was in the Air Force, and got to travel around quite a bit with his young family (I was old enough to remember most of the tourist-ing we did when we were stationed in Germany for three years). When he got out of the Air Force, they bought a home in the countryside of Quebec, not far from Ottawa.
Aaaaahhh!! So many beautiful sunrises, over the Gatineau hills, and walks on country roads through the farmers’ fields! As a young teen, I believe my very soul thrived on it!
We weren’t there long before a man and his wife stopped by, and invited us to his little church in the nearby town (Quyon). It was nothing more than a small, rented building, supported by the Pentecostal church in the next town (even further away from us), with a painted sign “Faith Gospel Chapel”. His wife played the piano and he did the preaching. But he was not a preacher, but a farmer. (Actually, I think his brother was the farmer but I forget what his occupation was.)
There were 4 or 5 of us teenagers, about 10-15 kids, and 3 or 4 other adults (how’s THAT for a small church!?); though Lennis did visit the homes and invite the parents as well. I was 16 or 17, and taught Sunday School every week before service. Sometimes there were also midweek services, and Evening Services (an unheard of thing in today’s church!) Sometimes Lennis would drive us to the Pentecostal church for special or evening services, and sometimes to exciting summer Camp Services about an hour away. He even got us teens taking turns to do the preaching, a couple of times! (I could barely talk to anyone for shyness at my high school, but I DID preach at that little church once or twice!!) We had lots of prayer meetings in that little building. I remember an evangelism campaign, where we went door-to-door in the town, with little comic book tracts.
It seemed like that little church went on and on for years. But I still remember, when the “congregation” dwindled down to about 3 or 4 of us, how uncomfortable it felt. And even though I can’t remember how we came to the decision, I DO remember what a relief it was when they finally decided to close it down.
But oh, the memories!!