Tuesday, June 29, 2010

 

Obituary and testimony of Danny Lake, Tinney Chapel's Own Cowboy Poet



Danny Lake, 2006 photo by Angela Wylie.
Perennial Host of Tinney Chapel's Annual
Cowboy Poetry Gathering.

Obituary And Testimony of Danny Lake

06/28/2010
Danny B. Lake, age 67 of Winnsboro, passed away on Monday, June 28, 2010. He was born on December 27, 1942 in Jacksonville, Texas to Kermit Lake and Marie J. Hopwood. He was a veteran of the United States Navy, an Army Reservist, a retired Mesquite Police Officer, a member of the Texas Cattleman's Association, and a member of Tinney Chapel UMC in Winnsboro. He was preceded in death by his mother, Marie Pruitt. Surviving are his wife, Patricia Lake of Winnsboro; son, Ray Lake and wife Tammy of Beaumont; daughter, Christine Hildreth and husband Matt of Frisco; sister, Kay Castolenia and husband Lawrence of Pagosa Springs, Colorado; brother, Ricky Pruitt of Colorado; six grandchildren, Jeremy, Misty, Madison, Dakota, John, Donny; five great-grandchildren, Bailey, Londyn, Gunner, Bryson, and Taylor.

Service Schedule: Beaty Funeral Home
Visitation Date: Wednesday, June 30, 2010
Visitation Time: 6pm to 8pm
Visitation Location: Beaty Funeral Home
Service Date: Thursday, July 01, 2010
Service Time: 11am
Service Location: Beaty Funeral Home
Burial Date: Thursday, July 01, 2010
Burial Location: Shady Grove Cemetery
Copyright © 2010 Beaty Funeral Home

TESTIMONY OF DANNY LAKE (from July 10, 2003):

Patti and I came to this area a couple of years ago after being unchurched for a while. We had no friends or relatives in Winnsboro and certainly had no idea where our church home might be. That is, until we met Donald and Corinne Tinney, our next-door neighbors. From the first time we came to Tinney Chapel, at their invitation, we knew that this was meant to be our church home. It was the right place for us to build our lives on and we thank God for Tinney Chapel. --From Tinney Chapel UMC Communications archives, maintained by Joe Dan Boyd.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

 

Hands Of Praise Signing Choir @ Tinney Chapel



Click on any image to view it in larger format.
 

Reasons not to follow Jesus examined @ Tinney Chapel





Click on any image to view it in larger format or click on the arrow below to view the video of Pastor Sue Gross' sermon, titled "You Can't Make Me."

video

You Can't Make Me: Reasons Not To Follow Jesus Examined

Two Scripture readings served as ammunition for Pastor Sue Gross' sermon today, tantalizingly titled, You Can't Make Me, which was eventually exposed as a both a serious and slightly humorous examination of the reasons that many of us present, to ourselves and to the world, for not following Jesus, at least not just now!

The first Scripture was read by Lay Reader David Stanton (see photo above): 1 Kings 19:19-21 and 2 Kings 2:1-2, 6-14. These Old Testament Scriptures dealt with Elisha following Elijah.

But most of the Pastor's examples came from the second reading, entirely about following Jesus, which she delivered immediately ahead of her sermon. The two primary examples were:

Wait until I bury my father!

Wait until I say goodbye to my family!

Those were two reasons, stemming from the New Testament Gospel of Luke, Chapter 9:51-62, in which Jesus and His disciples seek vainly for hospitality in Samaria, prompting two of the Lord's most inner-circle disciples to suggest calling down fire to consume the inhospitable unbelievers. Meanwhile, a more patient Jesus counsels moderation to James and John, the Sons of Thunder.

In making His decision to travel through Samaria on the way to Jerusalem, Jesus encounters upfront rudeness from the inhabitants from whom His disciples request hospitality. "Not in my village," quipped Pastor Sue, in a humorous paraphrase of the reception to Jesus' advance party. "This, despite the custom, even the law, of that day which virtually mandated hospitality to travelers. But, perhaps this can be explained, to some extent, by the longtime animosity between the Samaritans and the Jews."

However, the Pastor emphasized, the Samaritans could not have known the magnitude of their missed opportunity: The potential life-changing experience of interacting with Jesus, the Son of Man. In fact, it is in this Scripture passage that Jesus emphasizes how birds have nests and foxes have holes, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay His head.

Jesus and His traveling companions moved on to another village, the exact location unspecified, encountering would-be-followers along the way. Neither of their reasons for delay, mentioned above, appear acceptable to Jesus. Pastor Sue interpreted this event as a potential First Century example of the well-known attitude of You-can't-make-me!

Perhaps not all that different from those of us in the modern world who say we intend to follow Jesus when the time is right for us: Just not right this minute.

"There has to be a real need for Jesus, a commitment to Him," declared Pastor Sue. "We put obstacles in our own way of following Jesus. Meanwhile, the responsibility for a relationship with God lives within our own souls.

"The wonder of it all is that when we are ready, Jesus is still there, waiting for us to follow Him," added Pastor Sue. "If we knock on the door, Jesus will answer it immediately, not just if He happens to feel like it. Jesus is always ready to search for the lost sheep among us.

"Showing just how much Jesus loves us.!

Amen"

Monday, June 21, 2010

 

Yard Sale & Car Wash @ Tinney Chapel Saturday, June 26, 8 am to 4 pm


Click on the image above to view it in larger format.

An all-day yard sale and car wash, hosted by the English As Second Language (ESL) Classes of Tinney Chapel United Methodist Church, is scheduled for Saturday, June 26, at the church’s 3-acre campus just off FM 312 at 449 County Road 4620.

Volunteers will be working from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., according to Rev. Sue Gross, event facilitator and Pastor of Tinney Chapel UMC.

This event is to help with medical and surgical expenses for the Tony Watson family, says Rev. Gross.

Tinney Chapel is two miles south of Winnsboro on FM 312 and one-fourth mile east on CR 4620.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

 

Fire On The Cross: Tinney Chapel at Hynson Chapel on Father's Day








Click on any image to view it in larger format and/or click on the arrow below to view the sermon and burning cross video.
video

Forgiveness: The Essential Christian Attitude

Rev. Sue Gross, Pastor of Tinney Chapel UMC, made it clear that Christians can not afford to overlook forgiveness in their lives as she filled the pulpit at Hynson Chapel CME Church on both Father's Day and Hynson Chapel's 67th Annual Homecoming Celebration.

Not only do we derive real health benefits from the practice of forgiveness, she emphasized, but it's also essential for Christians who, themselves, want to be forgiven for their trespasses, especially by God The Father.

But that's easier said than done, she conceded, and suggested that we aren't really up to the practice without help from the Holy Spirit, who reminds us that Jesus has already paid the price for our sins by his sacrificial death on the Cross.

Pastor Sue related the Parable of Jesus from Chapter 18 of Matthew's Gospel. There, Jesus describes a servant who is forgiven by his king for a substantial debt. Just forget about that big debt, it has been forgiven! So, the servant departs in a good mood until he runs into another person who happens to owe him a relatively small amount of cash, for which he demands immediate payment or debtor's prison. In the end, the forgiving king learns of this atrocious, unforgiving act, calls him back before him, reinstates the large debt, tongue-lashes him appropriately and sends him to jail.

The bottom line, said Pastor Sue, is that God The Father will not forgive us unless we also forgive others.

Why is this a hard lesson to get across? Perhaps, suggests Pastor Sue, it's because Satan is such a good salesman. We may begin to pay more attention to Satan than to God, and one definition of sin is, after all, the absence of God. The Greek word for sin is debt, perhaps meaning that when we sin, we dig ourselves deeper into debt?

When we don't forgive, we strain our own relationship with God, and only God is sufficiently perfect to demand repentance before granting forgiveness. We, as mere humans, can't afford to do that. We must forgive without demanding repentance. Here, the Pastor quoted Isaiah 53:6: Like sheep, we have all gone astray.

Neither can we afford to forgive without also forgetting, added Pastor Sue. To do otherwise is to fail to forgive from the heart, a necessity for pleasing God. When we truly forgive, it must be the same thing as a full pardon. The slate must be wiped clean.

The Pastor mentioned at least two personal instances in her family in which forgiveness once appeared an impossible goal, but over time it happened and a right relationship with God was resumed.

Rev. Gross also cited seven steps toward gauging your progress toward forgiveness:

1. Ask yourself if you have been hurt.
2. Confess that you have sinned against God.
3. Acknowledge that God did not retaliate against you, but sent His Son to the Cross.
4. If you don't forgive others, God can not forgive you.
5. With God's help, consider working toward total forgiveness.
6. Daily request that God give you the power to forgive.
7. As you become successful, ask God if you should let the other person know that you have forgiven them, a step that may not always be a good idea.

Christians must model the process of forgiveness, said Pastor Sue, if the world is to experience reconciliation.

To demonstrate the power of God's forgiveness, Pastor Sue asked everyone in this joint congregation of Anglo-Americans and African-Americans to write on a piece of paper something or someone for whom forgiveness is in order in your life and then nail that paper to the Cross that stood near the pulpit.

Afterward, she used the Christ candle to ignite the papers, which suddenly burst into bright flame (see photo above and late in the video) which consumed all the papers, leaving no trace of the papers or the reference to sins!

That's the way God operates for believers!

On this day of the extended worship service (two hours), Rev. Herbert Scott was the Presiding Elder and Pastor, Mrs. Johnnie Wright, Event Chair, Mrs. Rachel Washington, Musician, Ms. Virlee Shaw, Devotional and Memorial Prayer. The Tinney Chapel choir performed with piano accompaniment by Molly Mathis. Other invited clergy: Rev. Craig Duffey, Faith Building Ministries, Rev. Michael Rush, Oak Grove CME Church, Rev. Ricky Abraham, Mount Lebanon CME Church, Elder Wilkie Webster, Mount Olive Church of God in Christ and Rev. Tommy E. Shelton, Tranquil Baptist Church.

Hymns included Blessed Assurance, Yield Not To Temptation, Hold To God's Unchanging Hand and the Tinney Chapel medley.

It was a memorable day for all.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

 

Pleasant Mountain Boys Perform at Tinney Chapel's Annual Fish Fry




Click on any image to view it in larger format and/or click on the arrow below to view the video of Pleasant Mountain Boys' introduction at Tinney Chapel and performance of three songs, including Chinese Food Song, Vienna Sausage Song and He's My Dad, a tribute to keyboardist Jerry Smith's biological father and his heavenly Father.
video

Come And Dine

The Pleasant Mountain Boys actually sang the old song, Come And Dine, an old classic sacred song from the very early part of the Twentieth Century, which I, myself, resurrected and sang at Tinney Chapel a few months ago when I delivered a lay speaker sermon with the same title, both of which were inspired from the Gospel of John, Chapter 21, verse 12 in the King James Version.

I spent much of my East Texas youth listening to and singing that old song, Come And Dine, and was especially fond of the version by the late Grandpa Jones, most recently of Hee Haw fame, but who was also one of the true pioneers of authentic country music.

It was, dare I risk sounding trite by saying that it was, indeed, a pleasant experience to hear tonight's modern exponent of Texas-style country gospel, the Pleasant Mountain Boys, sing one of my all-time favorite sacred songs.

Thanks guys: Waylon Moore, bandleader; Jerry Smith, keyboard; John Fitch, mandolin; Brian Moore, baritone; Tony Russell, electric guitar; Larry Russell, drums. Please note the group picture, above, in the photo collage of the entire band, with some closeups inserted.

Among the group's moving sacred songs, the Tinney Chapel congregation responded especially to I Sing About Jesus, Someday We'll See Jesus, I'm Just A Small Grain Of Sand, Who Am I, but perhaps the most memorable was the song written by band member Jerry Smith, He's My Dad, at once a tribute to his own late biological father and also to his Holy Father, the Savior Of His Soul. Bandleader Waylon Moore noted how difficult it often is to find a song that it suitable for Father's Day, but this one certainly fills the bill. Check it out on the video available on this post. It's also available on one of their commercial recordings.

The Pleasant Mountain Boys sang some of their novelty songs, and included a tad of country comedy in their stage act. Among the highlights, which may also be viewed on this post's video, are the two humorous songs about Chinese food and that miracle food, Vienna sausage. Check those out as well.

This talented group is based in nearby Mount Pleasant, Texas, and you may visit their website at: http://www.pleasantmountainboys.com/ and if that link does not show up live, for instant clicking, on this page, just copy/paste it into your browser address window and explore their fascinating website. Or, just click the title of this blog post at the top of the page and it should take you to their website.

The group also markets several Compact Discs and, and even some cassettes. Again, check out their website.

By the way, the fish, hush puppies and french fries, cooked by master country chef, Bobby Thompson, were outstanding tonight, as were the side dishes and desserts brought and served by the ladies and other members of the Tinney Chapel congregation. A good time was had by all, and the house was full.

Fish isn't all that is served at Tinney Chapel, and everyone has an open invitation to Come And Dine on any given Sunday!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

 

Public Invited to Annual Fish Fry @ Tinney Chapel June 19, 2010 featuring Pleasant Mountain Boys


Click on any image to view it in larger format.

An old-fashioned iron kettle
fish fry fundraiser is the centerpiece
event in an evening of fun and
fellowship between 5:00 pm & 7:00 p.m.
Saturday, June 19, at the spacious, 8,000 sq. ft., Family Life Center of Tinney Chapel United Methodist Church, two miles south of Winnsboro on FM 312, then east one-quarter mile on CR 4620.

The Pleasant Mountain Boys Southern Gospel Band, of Mt. Pleasant, TX, will provide entertainment. Check them out at: www.pleasantmountainboys.com

“Delta catfish with all the trimmings: fries, cole slaw, hush puppies, iced tea and a choice of homemade desserts is our menu,” says event chairman Bob Deitering. “The chief cook is Bobby Thompson, and desserts will be provided by the Ladies
Group, and other volunteers, of Tinney Chapel UMC.

“The public is invited, and
donations or love offerings will be
gratefully accepted toward Tinney
Chapel’s broad range of ministries,”
explains Deitering.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

 

Tinney Chapel Needs You To Help Save Lives Of Children


Click on any image to view it in larger format.

Imagine No Malaria

Malaria was “contagious” at the recent North Texas Annual Conference in Wichita Falls, although not in a medical sense.

No one was in danger of contracting the disease there, but excitement about eradicating malaria from Africa was a hot topic in the exhibit booth hall, on the Conference stage and at the Clergy/Laity event on opening night.

Eradicated from the U.S. for the past 50 years, malaria still strikes a precious child of God every 30 seconds in Africa. That’s a shocking record of 120 childhood deaths every hour of every day.

On opening night, the Conference worship service offering was earmarked entirely for a new United Methodist campaign to combat this deadly threat, described by Rev. Gary Henderson, Executive Director of the United Methodist Church's Global Health Initiative.

It’s a denomination-wide initiative, called “Imagine No Malaria,” intended to eliminate malaria deaths in Africa by the year 2015.

These children, explained Rev. Henderson, are dying from a preventable, beatable and treatable disease, which he labels as an unbearable situation, especially since every child means the world to somebody!

For example, recently, Rev. Henderson visited his great niece, who is the apple of her great uncle’s eye. She’s two and a half years old, and he thanks God that he does not have to worry about malaria: that he can expect his niece to grow into adulthood.

North Texas Conference Bishop Earl Bledsoe recently visited Africa’s Democratic Republic of Congo, where he actually witnessed the death of one of the children stricken with malaria: “It was a heartbreaking, humbling experience,” recalled the Bishop, who promised to continue his contributions to “Imagine No Malaria,” and urged all of us to do the same.

”Imagine if these children had the opportunity to grow to adulthood,” said Rev. Henderson. “Imagine if we could change millions of lives for generations to come. As the people of the United Methodist Church, we have the opportunity, through “Imagine No Malaria,” to do exactly that.”

Rev. Henderson says this new initiative enlarges our territory, playing on The Prayer of Jabez theme: “We have collaborated with a large mobile community to participate in eliminating malaria deaths,” he added. “Notable among our partners is the United Nations Foundation, with whom we were in a founding partner relationship with our previously successful program, “Nothing But Nets.”

As most United Methodists know, “Nothing but Nets” was a giant first step, and “Imagine No Malaria” is now viewed as the next, a much more expansive, step toward the actual elimination of deaths from malaria.

The goal is to raise $75 million dollars, yes, that's $75 million dollars, to eliminate malaria deaths in Africa by the year 2015--just five years away--in partnership with our brothers and sisters in Africa. To empower an entire continent to achieve a sustainable victory over the disease. Africa must win this fight, but they need our help, said Rev. Henderson.

Among the keys to the success of this campaign are (1) prevention (providing bed nets and interrupting the mosquito’s life cycle), (2) education (training family and health workers), (3) communication (the ability to deliver messages about malaria and treatment through our hospitals and clinics).

Also at Annual Conference, a puppet show highlighted some targets of opportunity in the new initiative, and some recent fund-raising events. One 10-year-old boy, for instance, raised $10,000 for the program. Others talked about posting on Facebook, and other social media, to create interest in contributing to “Imagine No Malaria.”

A booth in the Conference exhibit hall was manned with volunteers, brochures, and an opportunity to earn a special “zap malaria” bracelet, the mark of being a “warrior” in this initiative. The bottom line is that United Methodists can do this, church by church, if everyone works at getting the word out.

This is a transformational moment, believe Rev. Henderson and Bishop Bledsoe, because we have an opportunity to participate in the transformation of the world, through “Imagine No Malaria,” and thus see children grow into adulthood to become disciples of Jesus Christ, to embrace this Kyros moment at the appointed time in the purpose of God and--most important--to do something!

Rev. Henderson said the gauntlet has been thrown down in Southwest Texas by Bishop James Dorff, and the members of the Annual Conference there. “They stepped out first to help launch the fund raising arm of “Imagine No Malaria,” he explained. “But, Bishop Dorff learned much of what he knows about ministry here in the North Texas Conference. You were his teachers. So, now we call upon the teachers--all of you--to respond to the student.”

To learn more about malaria and the new United Methodist initiative, and the issues around both, visit this website,
http://www.imaginenomalaria.org/site/c.4dIBILOnGaIQE/b.5938999/k.C05A/Home.htm

Meanwhile, Rev. Henderson suggests raising malaria awareness in every way you can, pray, claim the Scripture of Ephesians 3:20-21 and agree to save lives!

Tuesday, June 01, 2010

 

The Woman With The Hoe: Aunt Minnie Fowler Tinney



Click on any image to view it in larger format.

The Woman With The Hoe:
Tinney Talk (June 2010) & Poem

Minnie Francis Fowler Tinney: 1886-1957.
Married Andrew Glass (Doc) Tinney February 27, 1916.
Children: Millie Lee, Mary Belinda (Pet), Hazel Virginia, Clarence Carl & Bonnie Francis.

Tinney Talk, June 2010: Observations by Joe Dan Boyd
A prose tribute to Aunt Minnie Tinney

THE WOMAN WITH THE HOE during my upbringing was Aunt Minnie Tinney, who lived most of her adult life a few hundred yards from Tinney Chapel, on the land now owned and occupied by the Lake family. When I think of Aunt Minnie today, I am sometimes reminded of the famous painting and poem, each titled The Man With A Hoe. Both the painting and the poem, like Aunt Minnie Tinney herself, were products of the 19th Century.

AMONG THE DIFFERENCES were Aunt Minnie’s gender and the type of hoe she wielded so fast and furiously. Both Edwin Markham’s poem and Jean-Francois Millet’s painting paid tribute to a man with a short-handled hoe, which actually resembled what was called, during my childhood in the Tinney Chapel Community, a grubbing hoe, then used primarily for clearing new ground of brush and small trees that interfered with crop cultivation.

AUNT MINNIE’S HOE WAS THE LONG-HANDLED VERSION, which every farmer in my youth used frequently, and for a very different purpose: to thin newly emerged crop seedlings and to rid the seedbed of bad-acting grasses and weeds that would otherwise sap valuable nutrients and moisture. It was tedious and laborious, but highly essential work, and those who did it well, did it fast, or both, were highly praised and sometimes highly paid by the standards of that era.

FOR ME, THAT ERA WAS THE LATE 1930S, all the 1940s and the very early 1950s, a time that was dominated by the unusual hand-eye coordination of Aunt Minnie, who filed her hoe to a near-razor’s edge before her blade fell heavy, hard and accurately within crop rows and along seedbed ledges.

THE WELL-WORN OAK HANDLE OF AUNT MINNIE’S BLADE etched hard callus on the tissue of each hand, a badge of honor appropriate to her pioneer heritage and confirming her mystical reverence for the land. She worked crop rows with brisk precision, and those who tried to match her practiced pace were eventually put to shame and forced to concede.

AUNT MINNIE LIVED AND LABORED during a time when society honored, even revered, role models of her stripe, those associated with the positive modeling of a hard day’s work done well. She was the agricultural equivalent of Annie Oakley: Her long-handled hoe blade was the fastest, and most accurate, of them all.


The Woman With The Hoe
A poetic tribute to Aunt Minnie Tinney

Proud Minnie, child of an earlier Century
Daughter of Frank Fowler and feared of no man
Spinster for her first three decades
Barefoot girl with chubby cheeks of tan

She viewed the world through narrowed brown eyes
Topped with straight brown, tightly combed hair
Framing a pleasant, yet unsmiling, countenance
Free of any makeup: No hint of worldly air

At age 30 she said yes to my Uncle Doc Tinney
Who was himself already into his fourth decade
For the rest of their lives they tilled the soil
Wresting a living with mule, Kelly plow and hoe blade

She bore their children and cooked their meals
And as an equal opportunity wife
Minnie toiled in fields of cotton, corn and grain
Where long-handled hoe technique defined her life

Minnie's hoe was always the sharpest
She filed it near to a straight razor's edge
Minnie's blade fell heavy, hard and accurately
Within the crop row and along the seedbed ledge

The well-worn oak handle of Minnie's blade
Etched hard callus on the tissue of each hand
It was a badge of honor for her pioneer heritage
Confirming Minnie's mystical reverence for the land

She walked the rows with brisk precision
Expertly thinning seedlings, eliminating grass and weed
Those who tried to match Minnie's furious pace
Were eventually put to shame, forced to concede

Years passed, decades came and went
Proud Minnie's pace began to slow
The day finally came when word passed
That Aunt Minnie had put up the hoe

But her legacy is unmatched in Tinneytown
Her fame still the toast of church and town hall
Let's hear it for Proud Minnie Tinney
Whose long-handled hoe blade was fastest of them all.
 

Tinney Talk, June, 2010


Click on any image to view it in larger format.
Minnie Francis Fowler Tinney: 1886-1957.
Married Andrew Glass (Doc) Tinney February 27, 1916.
Children: Millie Lee, Mary Belinda (Pet), Hazel Virginia, Clarence Carl & Bonnie Francis.

Tinney Talk, Observations by Joe Dan Boyd

THE WOMAN WITH THE HOE during my upbringing was Aunt Minnie Tinney, who lived most of her adult life a few hundred yards from Tinney Chapel, on the land now owned and occupied by Danny & Pat Lake. When I think of her today, I am sometimes reminded of the famous painting and poem, each titled The Man With A Hoe. Both the painting and the poem, like Aunt Minnie Tinney, were products of the 19th Century.

AMONG THE DIFFERENCES were Aunt Minnie’s gender and the type of hoe she wielded so fast and furiously. Both Edwin Markham’s poem and Jean-Francois Millet’s painting paid tribute to a man with a short-handled hoe, which actually resembled what was called, during my childhood in the Tinney Chapel Community, a grubbing hoe, then used primarily for clearing new ground of brush and small trees that interfered with crop cultivation.

AUNT MINNIE’S HOE WAS THE LONG-HANDLED VERSION, which every farmer in my youth used frequently, and for a very different purpose: to thin newly emerged crop seedlings and to rid the seedbed of bad-acting grasses and weeds that would otherwise sap valuable nutrients and moisture. It was tedious and laborious, but highly essential work, and those who did it well, did it fast, or both, were highly praised and sometimes highly paid by the standards of that era.

FOR ME, THAT ERA WAS THE LATE 1930s, all the 1940s and the very early 1950s, a time that was dominated by the unusual hand-eye coordination of Aunt Minnie, who filed her hoe to a near-razor’s edge before her blade fell heavy, hard and accurately within crop rows and along seedbed ledges.

THE WELL-WORN OAK HANDLE OF AUNT MINNIE’S BLADE etched hard callus on the tissue of each hand, a badge of honor appropriate to her pioneer heritage and confirming her mystical reverence for the land. She worked crop rows with brisk precision, and those who tried to match her practiced pace were eventually put to shame and forced to concede.

AUNT MINNIE LIVED AND LABORED during a time when society honored, even revered, role models of her stripe, those associated with the positive modeling of a hard day’s work done well. She was the agricultural equivalent of Annie Oakley: Her long-handled hoe blade was the fastest, and most accurate, of them all.

The Woman With A Hoe

Proud Minnie, child of an earlier Century
Daughter of Frank Fowler and feared of no man
Spinster for her first three decades
Barefoot girl with chubby cheeks of tan

She viewed the world through narrowed brown eyes
Topped with straight brown, tightly combed hair
Framing a pleasant, yet unsmiling, countenance
Free of any makeup: No hint of worldly air

At age 30 she said yes to my Uncle Doc Tinney
Who was himself already into his fourth decade
For the rest of their lives they tilled the soil
Wresting a living with mule, Kelly plow and hoe blade

She bore their children and cooked their meals
And as an equal opportunity wife
Minnie toiled in fields of cotton, corn and grain
Where long-handled hoe technique defined her life

Minnie's hoe was always the sharpest
She filed it near to a straight razor's edge
Minnie's blade fell heavy, hard and accurately
Within the crop row and along the seedbed ledge

The well-worn oak handle of Minnie's blade
Etched hard callus on the tissue of each hand
It was a badge of honor for her pioneer heritage
Confirming Minnie's mystical reverence for the land

She walked the rows with brisk precision
Expertly thinning seedlings, eliminating grass and weed
Those who tried to match Minnie's furious pace
Were eventually put to shame, forced to concede

Years passed, decades came and went
Proud Minnie's pace began to slow
The day finally came when word passed
That Aunt Minnie had put up the hoe

But her legacy is unmatched in Tinneytown
Her fame still the toast of church and town hall
Let's hear it for Proud Minnie Tinney
Whose long-handled hoe blade was fastest of them all.

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