Several years ago I corresponded with a delightful lady who lived in one of the eastern states (memory ain't what it used to be and I can't recall just where she lived). We initially began corresponding regarding my French ancestor Pierre Jouett. [A descendant John "Jack" Jouett is called the Paul Revere of Virginia. He was also the attorney who represented his cousin Lewis Robards in the divorce suit from Rachel Donelson Robards Jackson (who married President Andrew Jackson) . Another descendant James Edward Jouett was the person David Farragut spoke to when he said "Damn the torpedoes. Jouett, full speed!" Just throwing in some family trivia . . .]
Throughout the ensuing months and years, she and I shared our genealogy research, as well as our thoughts about family, passions, interests, history, writing, etc. In one of my e-mails, I mentioned that I admired the writer and theologian Frederick Buechner and how his writings truly spoke to my heart.
Her reply was
"Oh, Freddy! He was so handsome and fun. We lived across the street from his grandparents and I was thrilled when he would come to stay; our families were great friends."
FREDDY! I was ecstatic to be corresponding with somewho could refer to Frederick Buechner as "Freddy."
I've since lost contact with this interesting and delightful woman but most certainly remember the Buechner reminisces.
I think I had almost every book Buechner wrote and lost all but a few in the 1998 flood (ah - the historic flood; it has become a reference point for my life, I think).
From Faith and Fiction:
The ways God appears in our lives are elusive and ambiguous always. There is always room for doubt in order, perhaps, that there will always be room to breathe. There is so much in life that hides God and denies the very possibility of God that there are times when it is hard not to deny God altogether. Yet it is possible to have faith nonetheless. Faith is that Nonetheless.
Writing strikes me as intravenous. As you sit there only a few inches from the printed page, the words you read go directly into the bloodstream and go into it at full strength. More than the painting you see or the music you hear, the words you read become in the very act of reading them part of who you are. . . . If there is poison in the words, you are poisoned; if there is nourishment, you are nourished; if there is beauty, you are made a little more beautiful.