Friday, September 14, 2007

Old Roots

In California, our church is pretty old at almost 50 years. Before coming here, I never served a church younger than 100 years old. I often-time consider myself a dinosaur given my heritage of parents, grand-parents and great-grand-parents who were Swedish Covenant immigrants.
Then I married Martha Ensign. I met her in 1969 when our family lived in Richmond Virginia. Her father was then an ordained Presbyterian minister and Executive Presbyter of Hanover Presbytery. Her father initially called me a "damned Yankee" without smiling (later he just called me a Yankee).
Last week Martha flew home for her parents' 60th anniversary with all three of her siblings. One of their outings was to a cemetery in Richmond where 4 US Presidents are buried along with Jefferson Davis, President of the Confederacy...and a relative to Martha's father.

Jefferson Davis' wife was a direct relative of Martha's dad, whose family came to the USA in the 1600's. They spent hours talking about what it meant to be on the losing side of the Civil War. If you note the picture below, Jefferson Davis was also a well-respected leader in the US government before the conflict.

By the time my family came to the USA in the 1880's, Martha's family had arrived, established itself, lost overything, and was rebuilding. Her father, by the way, is a pioneer in inter-racial camping in the South, even experiencing a KKK cross-burning in their front yard for daring to offer an integrated camp. Just when I thought I'd arrived, someone was here long before me!


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