ARE YOU A NATIVE ATLANTAN ??
A group calling themselves " Atlanta Natives.com
has posted some of the material from this newsletter on their web site,
and now are asking us to include their omnline poll asking " if you are
a native Atlantan" I agreed to include their poll here, so if you are
truly a native Atlantan click here Main Page and take part.
A SPECIAL CHRISTMAS MESSAGE
We have run this special Christmas message
before but since we have several hundred new readers I think maybe it
ia approriate to include it again.
The 1954 Christmas Pageant
The year was 1954. and Deecember I was in the eighth grade at the time.
The polio epidemic had eased up somewhat, but there were
still a lot of children in the hospitals, many in iron lungs. One of
those was in my Sunday School class. Her name was Joanne. I don't remember her last name, but that doesn't really matter. This is her story.
Joanne was one of the early victims of polio, and ended up
sicker than most. She spent a good year in an iron lung before she was
able to use just a respirator that was attached to her chest during the
day. At night, she still needed to sleep in her "cocoon" as she called
it. Once she was able to be outside the iron lung for any amount of
time, her physical therapy started, and continued for a long time, it
was years actually.
At the end of 1953 she was able to come back and visit our
class, instead of the other way around us visiting her at home or in
the hospital. She was in a wheel chair at first, still with a chest
plate to help her breathe when she got tired. But, she would come about
every couple of weeks. Eventually she was fitted with leg braces. Big,
cumbersome and heavy things back then. She still needed crutches to
At the start of the 1954 year we decided to put on a
Christmas pageant for the church. Joanne was still around, now without
the chest plate, but still mostly in her wheelchair. She only had the
energy to walk a short distance at a time.
A few months later, we were ready. We'd memorized our
parts (I was a shepherd). There was the Nativity, complete a stable and
crib, Joanne was one of the three kings, and she and the other two
kings would come on stage last.
The organist started playing "We three kings of Orient are
Ănd The lights went down. and the procession started at the back of the
church. It wasn't until the three kings had made it half way up the
aisle that the audience realized what was happening, why the awed
silence in back.
When they looked around they saw Joanne. Walking. Without
her crutches. Holding just a staff, and singing and smiling through her
own tears. She finally reached the first step up to the altar and the
The audience stood up, and clapped.
There wasn't a dry eye in the church.....