Friday, March 20, 2009

Friday Fiction:

I'm hosting Friday Fiction today and I'm sorry to say I got off to a late start! Please feel free to leave a link to your post and enjoy the great fiction!

My contribution is a story I wrote for the Challenge with "missions" as the topic. It's based on the year my family and I helped to start and build a church outside of Chicago, in Griffith, Indiana.

Dear Melinda, How Are You?
By Dee Yoder

September 22, 1965

Dear Melinda,

How are you? I’m fine. I’ve only been in Griffith for two weeks, and I already miss Ohio!

We’re going through the neighborhood tomorrow to pass out flyers about our new church. I hope I don’t see any kids from my school. I’m embarrassed enough to have church there every Sunday.

We’re staying with the Richards, but I hope we get our own house soon. (Get this: Sister Richard freezes the milk! It makes my cereal cold and slushy.)

BFA, *


October 10, 1965

Dear Melinda,

How are you doing? I’m fine.

Brother Richard helped us find a house! It’s really cool. It has a breezeway, and a patio! (FYI: the milkman on our route is cute, too.)

We had 23 people in service on Sunday. Afterward, we visited a family who lives in the country. They have a LOT of kids. Dad said they’re poor, and I believe it! There were CHICKENS running around in their yard. All of the kids had tennis shoes with holes in the toes. I felt sorry for them, but Mom said they’re rich in the Lord, so I guess that’s good.

I miss you. I wish my Mom would let me live with you in Ohio. Why did MY family have to come to Indiana to help start this church?

There’s a mean man on our street who slammed his door really hard when Brother Richard invited him to church this Sunday. Brother Richard’s face turned red, but he said he was going to pray extra hard for that man. I hope so because he needs it! I don’t like him at ALL!!!

I’m going to help Sister Richard with a puppet show this week. It’ll be so much fun, and I won’t have to help set the chairs out. Yippee! Mom said the Richards are getting tired, and we should do what we can to show our support. Easy, if I can help like this!

I’m going to use Prell tonight to shampoo my hair. I hope I get the pearl from the bottom! I’ll send it to you, if I do!!



November 20, 1965

Dear Melinda,

How are you? How is Scruffy? Did his poodle cut turn out right?

We’ve invited the town to come to the school to eat Thanksgiving dinner. I’m going to bake chocolate pies! Mom and Sister Richard will cook the food, while Dad and Brother Richard set up tables. Brother Richard said the Lord wants us to share with needy families in town. I hope we’ll have enough food for everyone!!

Guess what? We’re going to start building our REAL church! It will take all winter, but I can’t wait for the church to move out of my school. Mrs. Smith, a teacher who comes to church, embarrassed me at lunch today. She spied me as I propped my arms on the table, and she yelled, “Thompson! Elbows off the table!” All the kids looked at me and laughed. Boy! Some Christian! I don’t think I’ll speak to her on Sunday.

I’ll write more later-- American Bandstand is coming on TV!

UR2sweet2B4gotten, ***


December 26, 1965

Dear Melinda,

Guess what? We had a blizzard! The Richards are stuck at our house. The snow is up to the front window! Dad and Brother Richard shoveled sidewalks all Christmas afternoon for the neighbors. Most of them don’t even come to our church. I wouldn’t do that!

Our new church finally has walls. Dad says it’ll be ready by spring. There are 55 people in our church now. The Richards and my parents pray every morning for the church to grow. I hope God listens; the faster it grows, the sooner we can move back to Ohio.

Stay sweet,


April 18, 1966

Dear Melinda,

The building is finished, and there are 72 people in our church! The Richards are moving to a new town, but we’re moving home!

The church gave us a good-bye party, and all the ladies cried. I cried, too. I guess I’ll miss them, even Mrs. Smith. (A little.) It’ll be strange not seeing them anymore. I hope the church keeps right on growing and growing.

I can’t wait to see you! I’ll show you the pictures of Griffith and our new church when we get home. The families are so nice here; maybe we’ll visit them again someday.

See you later, Alligator, in just a while, Crocodile!

Lydia (Your Soon-to-be-former-Hoosier Friend)

Girlfriend Lingo: *Best Friends Always, **Oh you cute-tee, I envy you, ***You are too sweet to be forgotten


Yvonne Blake said...

Wonderful ! It really sounds like two teenage girls chatting back and forth.

(hugs) Vonnie

Unknown said...

Love the letters!

Joanne Sher said...

Delightful piece. Loved watching her warm up to the place, and all the girlie talk. Great stuff, Dee!

Sharlyn Guthrie said...

Dee, as always, your dee-light is in the dee-tails! :) Prell with a pearl? I haven't thought about that for ages! I love the subtle chnage of attitude with each letter, too.

Teresa Lee Rainey . . . said...

This is absolutely adorable! I could picture her as she wrote - changing and growing attached to the place. Completely enjoyed reading this!

Patty Wysong said...

So cute! You do so well with the little girl voice!!

BethL said...

I remember this topic.. I really enjoyed the girlfriend (one-sided) discussion, and had to smile at the transformation of your MC. You have so many heart-warming details in this!

Peter Stone said...

Loved it, Dee. The banter in the letters is so realistic, and loved the way the MC's attitude slowly began to change throughout the article as she witnessed the love of Christ in action through the other characters.

Shelley Ledfors said...

Lovely--a neat format for the story and I loved the progression in her attitudes!