i asked he glanced around as if the ceiling might

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Unformatted text preview: e loud and long, and many times I wondered how such good people could drag themselves in week after week for a tongue-lashing. Some preachers were almost sadistic in their condemnation of whatever their followers might have done that week. Everything was a sin in rural Mississippi, and not just the basics as set forth in the Ten Commandments. I heard scathing rebukes of television, movies, cardplaying, popular magazines, sports events, cheerleader uniforms, desegregation, mixed-race churches, Disney—because it came on Sunday nights—dancing, social drinking, postmarital sex, everything. But Pastor Cooper was at peace. His sermon—twenty-eight minutes—was about tolerance and love. Love was Christ's principal message. The one thing Christ wanted us to do was to love one another. For the altar call we sang three verses of "Just As I Am," but no one moved. These folks had been down the aisle many times. As always, I hung around afterward for a few minutes to speak with Pastor Cooper. I told him how much I enjoyed the service, something I did whether I meant it or not, and I collected the names of the choir members for my column. Church folk were naturally warm and friendly, but at this stage of my tour they wanted to chat forever and pass along little gems that might end up in print. "My grandfather put the roof on this building in 1902." "The tornado of '38 skipped right over us during the summer revival." As I was leaving the building, I saw a man in a wheelchair being pushed down the handicap ramp. It was a face I'd seen before, and I walked over to say hello. Lenny Fargarson, the crippled boy, juror number seven or eight, had evidently taken a turn for the worse. During the trial in 1970 he had been able to walk, though it was not a pretty thing to behold. Now he was in a chair. His father introduced himself. Generated by ABC Amber LIT Converter, http://www.processtext.com/abclit.html His mother was in a cluster of ladies finishing up one last round of goodbyes. "Got a minu...
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This note was uploaded on 07/18/2010 for the course LIT 301 taught by Professor Dra during the Spring '10 term at American College of Computer & Information Sciences.

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