Don’t flip your tithe before church

Published 12:04 am Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Have you ever participated in a turkey shoot at Thanksgiving?

I had that opportunity when I was in the sixth grade. All the men used shotguns, but they let me use my Daisy air rifle. I was shooting in the youth division of which there were only two participants — a girl my age and myself. Luckily, I won my competition that day as we shot at targets located behind the L&N depot in downtown Perdido.

Now to this very day I believe Houston Wolf, Freddie Cenntenni and J C Wright somehow arranged for my winning that contest. It could be because as a young boy I would sit with these fine men on the depot platform while they whittled crafty objects from pieces of wood or they simply did not want a girl to win what was described as a “man” game.

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But a few days ago, I stopped at the Dollar General Store for a cold soft drink as I was heading out to the interstate. I told the manager of that store that I never thought we would have an “anchor store” in Perdido. She told me that this business is thriving very well. The store was filled with so many items you got the impression it was a combination grocery/department store. She said it is one of the most productive stores in this north Baldwin chain.

I got back in my car with my cool drink and drove just a short ways down the road to my “little Methodist Church on top of the hill.”

This was the church I attended as a young boy.

I took my cool drink and sat down beside the church bell, which was located adjacent to the building. As I sat there, I thought back to that day I won the turkey contest. I also thought back to that Sunday when I hit the gongs on that bell. You could hear it throughout Perdido. But on that Sunday for some reason I flipped my dime up in the air to see if I could catch it. That dime was to be deposited in the collection plate. My dad gave me a dime every Sunday to give to the church. I dropped in and it went somewhere between the bell and the church building. I remember how upset I was that day when I did not have a dime to give to the church.

So as I set there with my cold drink I thought perhaps someone had found it. I decided to look for it. As I was brushing back the grass and dirt under the bell a lady stopped her car and walked over. She wanted to know what I was doing digging in dirt and grass and I told her I was looking for a dime that I lost there 75 years ago. She said “let me help.” But the two of us were unable to uncover my dime. So I took a dime out my pocket and left it under the locked door, hoping someone would find it and place it in the Sunday collection.

The object of this lesson is do not flip your church or Sunday School coins in the air before church begins.

Well, the election has come and gone. As I see it, it was not a win for the Republicans. It was a win for a new movement. It was indeed a revolution. Praise God for this miraculous victory.

Now let’s take a look at some news from 1966.

Cliff Bethea, well-known merchant and cattle owner, retired from his business selling off over 240 of his prize Herefords. Buyers came from throughout the south to bid on his stock. Many will remember Mr. Cliff as owner of Cliff’s Cash and Carry grocery store, which was located on east Nashville Avenue.

Jan Akins, daughter of  Mr. and Mrs. Clarence Akins, was selected “Miss Flame,” queen of Atmore’s Fire department Ladies Auxiliary.

Ernest Miniard of WATM was chosen chairlady of the Christmas Seal Drive representing West Alabama Tuberculosis Association. She and husband, Tom, received Federal Communications Commission approval to add 29,000 watts of power to their WATM broadcasting outlet.

Mickey Cannon, ECHS basketball star, was selected to play in the Region 1 All-Star basketball game at the University of Alabama.

George Van Pelt was named “Young Farmer of the Year” by the Pensacola Chamber of Commerce. He and his brother, Jim operated a thriving dairy farm in Davisville, Fla.

John Daniel, local insurance agent, added Travelers Insurance to his line of property coverage and Hilbert Hall, son of Mr. and Mrs. Junior Hall of Porch, took top honors in a project involving conserving natural resources. The 4-H student was also active in the Jr. Cattleman’s Association.

Little League coaches and managers that year were Sterlin Fancher-Bank of Atmoe, Carl Copeland-American Legion, Heron Hall-Lions Club, John Bachelor- Maxwell Haley and Tom Bradberry-First National Bank.

Two prominent deaths were recorded that year. G.C Benton, Atmore’s “Mr. Legionnaire.” He held various offices locally and statewide in the American Legion. Dr. J O Lizenby died at the age of 70. A well-known surgeon throughout the south he owned and operated Greenlawn hospital.

Chemstrand Corporation changed its name to Monsanto Textile Division that year. Many from here and the surrounding area had gainful employment with that plant. In fact when the plant was built a few years earlier several outlying resident built homes here so they would not have far to drive to their work. In fact, this era was one of Atmore’s most productive building periods.

This was the year that President Johnson and his administration brought us Daylight saving Time through the “Uniform time Act.”

More next week.

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