Monday, May 14, 2007

Sunday Supplement: Muscular Christianity

Sir Richard Arcos writes: I was visiting my daughter, Mrs. Rule, in darkest Carmarthenshire. We wandered a little farther afield than usual, to the little town of Llanpeblli, where we attended the English Presbyterian Church, a charming gothic building with a schoolroom that would match the chapel if it hadn't been completed by economy-minded deacons. Still, it is a most impressive edifice.

The preacher there is the Rev. Dyfig Jones-Jones, DD, a man noted for his firey sermons, and this Sunday was no exception. Declaiming against the tendency to mindless cheerfulness prevalent in modern-day evangelicalism, the doughty preacher declared that he would punch the next person to ask him 'are you encouraged?'

Now, neither Mrs. Rule nor I had time to wait. Accordingly, we approached the man who had slept at the back of the church through most of ther sermon, and offered him a fiver to ask the minister 'are you encouraged?' as he left.

We were. The minister gave the man a most professional shiner. He was unconscious for several minutes. It is nice to find a truthful man.

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