Mitford Series

12 09 2005

I’m not reviewing the Mitford Series. I just have a few observations that I’d like to make.

First of all, does anyone know a pastor or priest like Father Tim? I am not familiar with Episcopalian clergy, but never in the Catholic church did you ever meet a priest so entirely devoted to his congregation. Even in our current church where the pastor boasts that his name is not on the sign, he would never entertain the thought of cooking a ham for someone’s wedding. He certainly wouldn’t be at the beck and call of the entire congregation the way Father Tim is.

But yet, that’s the charm of the book in a way. You see this man of faith mired deeply in his flock. He loves these people, and yet is human and can be annoyed with them at times. He knows his salvation, and is deeply touched each day by the hand of God in his life. I ask the question again. Does anyone know a pastor or priest like him?

The one thing that throws me off though is the nameless and faceless masses in Mitford. The Lord’s Chapel (Father Tim’s Church) boasts 120 families. There are also two other churches in town – one Presbyterian and one Baptist. Yet, the town seems like this tiny little place. There’s even a quaint little map of the town in the front of the book. I’m still trying to figure out where all the people to fill these churches are. It’s a very small place. I imagine that the map is more or less Father Tim’s stomping grounds, but it would seem odd that a loving and devoted priest would limit himself so. Anyway it puzzles me at times.

I’m enjoying reading them as a break from some of the more thoughtful books I’ve read lately. They are pretty typical best sellers with a little faith twist. I haven’t read anything like this in a while, a long while and probably won’t for a few years. For those of you who haven’t seen it, it’s a nine book series with the finale coming out in November. I had heard “Mitford” but didn’t know anything about it. Some lady threw the books on me at a yard sale where I bought more than 100 children’s books. So I figured, why not? Let’s lighten it up around here. I’m starting book 4 – and getting by with a little help from the Library!




One response

13 09 2005

I love that series! Father Tim seems to me pretty typical of a minister or pastor – at least, all those I’ve known. He reminds me very much of a relative who’s a Vicar in an Anglican church in the UK.

Surely the main role of a pastor is to be involved in the lives of all his congregation, at whatever degree they need him. I don’t quite know how that would work in an American-style mega-church, but in a normal congregation (normal in UK or Cyprus, anyway) with 100-250 people, the minister would usually be very much like Father Tim in this respect. Most of them would cook something for a wedding or potluck. I don’t think I could belong to a church where the leadership were not ordinary people involved in everyday life, and caring deeply for the needs of their congregation.

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