For many years my minister spouse has collected what is known among the church folk as bulletin bloopers.
These are basically mistakes — some caused by typos, some resulting from misplaced words, some stringing the wrong words together that change the meaning, often drastically and embarrassingly so — but basically they're little pieces of funny stuff that weren't intended to be so.
You wonder how these wonderful blurbs make it into the church bulletin or newsletter because people do read over these things, but it's just like it is here at the newspaper: We know what we intended to write, so that's what we see when we look at something.
It doesn't always turn out that way. A wrong word or letter here or there just turns a perfectly innocent announcement into something that brings on a laugh. Sometimes they can border on the risque, but they're all perfectly innocent.
I was going through some of Ed's folders the other day and came across a collection of some of his favorite bloopers. You've probably read them before — I've seen some of them lots of times — but they never fail to lift my spirits. And that's something we can all use at times.
Here are some of his favorites:
Bertha Belch, a missionary from Africa will be speaking tonight at Calvary Memorial Church. Come tonight and hear Bertha Belch all the way from Africa.
"Ladies, don't forget the rummage sale. It's a chance to get rid of those things not worth keeping around the house, Don't forget your husbands."
Next Sunday is the family hayride and bonfire at the Smiths'. Bring your own hot dogs and guns. Friends are welcome. Everyone come for a fun time.
The sermon this morning is "Jesus Walks on the Water." The sermon tonight is "Searching for Jesus."
Next Thursday there will be tryouts for the choir. Please join the group. They need all the help they can get.
Barbara remains in the hospital and needs blood donors for more transfusions. She is also having trouble sleeping and requests tapes of Pastor Joe's sermons.
Remember in prayer the many who are sick of our church and community.
Don't let worry kill you off; let the church help.
Irving Watson and Janie Green were married on Oct. 24 in the church. So ends a friendship that began in their schooldays.
For those of you who have children and don't know it, we have a nursery downstairs.
Please place your donation in the envelope along with the deceased person(s) you want remembered. Potluck supper Sunday at 5 p.m. Prayer and medication to follow.
The ladies of the church have cast off clothing of every kind. They may be seen in the basement on Friday afternoon.
This evening at 7 p.m. there will be a hymn-sing in the park across from the church. Bring a blanket and come prepared to sin.
Ladies Bible Study will be held Thursday morning at 10. All ladies are invited to lunch in the fellowship hall after the B.S. is done.
The eighth-graders will be presenting Shakespeare's "Hamlet" in the church basement Friday at 7 p.m. The congregation is invited to attend this tragedy. The associate minister unveiled the church's new tithing campaign slogan last Sunday. It is: "I upped my pledge. Up yours."
The Scouts are saving aluminum cans, bottles and other items to be recycled. Proceeds will be used to cripple children.
The pastor would appreciate it if the ladies of the congregation would lend him their electric girdles for the pancake breakfast next Sunday morning.
Low Self-Esteem Support Group will meet Thursday at 7 p.m. Please use the back door.
The pastor will preach his farewell message, after which the choir will sing, "Break Forth Into Joy."
A songfest was hell at the Methodist Church on Wednesday.
The eighth-graders will be presenting Shakespeare's "Hamlet" in the church basement Friday at 7 p.m. The congregation is invited to attend this tragedy.
The rosebud on the altar this morning is to announce the birth of David, the sin of Rev. and Mrs. Adams.
Tuesday at 4 p.m. there will be an ice cream social. All ladies giving milk will please come early.
At the evening service tonight, the sermon topic will be "What Is Hell?" Come early and listen to our choir practice.
Weight Watchers will meet at 7 p.m. at the First Presbyterian Church. Please use large double doors at the side entrance.
Please join us as we show our support for Amy and Alan who are preparing for the girth of their first child.
The Lutheran Men's Group will meet at 6 p.m. Steak, mashed potatoes, green beans, bread and dessert will be served for a nominal feel.
Our next hymn is "Angels We Have Heard Get High."
This being Easter Sunday, we will ask Mrs. Lewis to come forward and lay an egg on the altar.
The service will close with "Little Drops of Water." One of the ladies will start quietly and the rest of the congregation will join in.
Eight new choir robes are currently needed, due to the addition of several new members and to the deterioration of some older ones.
Women's Luncheon: Each member bring a sandwich. Polly Phillips will give the medication.
Karen's beautiful solo was: "It is Well With My Solo."
Congratulations to Tim and Ronda on the birth of their daughter October 12 through 17.
If you choose to heave during the postlude, please do so quietly.
We are grateful for the help of those who cleaned up the grounds around the church building and the rector.
Newsletters are not being sent to absentees because of their weight.
Helpers are needed! Please sign up on the information sheep.
As soon as the weather clears up, the men will have a goof outing.
Diana and Don request your presents at their wedding.
Lent is a period for preparing for Holy Weed and Easter.
Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget all His benefits.
For the word of God is quick and powerful ... piercing even to the dividing asunder of soup and spirit.
Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peach to men.
Bring one dozen coolies wrapped for Christmas. Volunteers are needed to spit up food.
And I'll add a classic headline that could have been included in a church bulletin but made it instead to the front page of the Benton Courier many years ago. It stated: "Baptists hear Amanda Tinkle."
Lynda Hollenbeck is senior editor of The Saline Courier.