Thursday, November 15, 2012

A Valuable Lesson

There appears to be a controversy going on about some children having crushing loads of homework, and hearing about it made me remember the most crushing assignment I ever had.

I was a freshman at Meredith College in Raleigh, taking Religion 101, Intro to the Old Testament.  The assignment involved reading a chapter or two from Genesis together with multiple commentaries and taking notes on the same, in effect coming up with our own commentary.

So here's a fundamentalist girl (for I was then in my Baptist phase) coming into contact for the first time, and very unexpectedly, with modern Liberal Protestant theological thought.  Almost every sentence I read knocked me off balance.  There was no way to get through it all and I was probably halfway finished with the assignment when I gave up.  The professor  never collected homework anyway, so it wouldn't matter.  I vented my frustration by scrawling across the bottom of the last page, in large letters, "How in the world does Dr. MacLean expect us to finish all this when for every 5 minutes of reading, I have to STOP AND THINK for fifteen?"

Of course the next class was the one time Dr. MacLean did collect homework.  I handed mine in with alternating deep shame and defiance.

My work came back two days later with an A+++ written at the top and a smile across Dr. Mac's face.


Anam Cara said...

I love it.

There is a story that one of the Anglican priests here tells. At the VA Theological seminary there was a discussion about what words Jesus had actually said. From the back of the room came a voice, "They're the parts written in red."

Anastasia Theodoridis said...

I love that one, too!

Once when my daughter was visiting us with her boyfriend, the question arose, "Who wrote the Bible, anyway? Who came up with all this stuff?"

Her boyfriend knew the answer: "King James, wasn't it?"

Matushka Anna said...

LOL! Good stories.