Dindy remembers an impromptu Santa parade

Dindy remembers an impromptu Santa parade

Bishop Mary Virginia "Dindy" Taylor, resident bishop of Holston Conference, remembers a Christmas past with her husband, Rev. Rusty Taylor, and daughters Mandy and Tiffany.

Holston friends share scenes from seasons past. Last in a series

Holston Conference
Alcoa, Tenn.


It's hard to select just one Christmas memory to share with you. Once I open the door, the memories just keep rolling out. I'll limit them here to just two! 

One memory happened early in our ministry at Fountain City United Methodist Church. I remember the Christmas Eve communion service, when the greenery of the Advent wreath caught on fire. Not wanting to create a commotion, I tried to quietly blow out the small flame while all eyes were closed during Rusty's prayer. Lucky for us, a man on the front pew stepped across the altar rail and soaked the blaze with baptismal font water!

The second memory involves cutting a live Christmas tree, which has been a favorite family activity through the years. When Mandy and Tiffany were ages 8 and 3, we headed off one Saturday to White Top Mountain to select our tree.

However, just as we were about to turn left on the main street through Damascus, Va., a police officer stepped in front of us. "Folks, you are going to have to wait a while," he said. "The Christmas parade is starting."

We were riding in our new red 1988 GMC pickup truck. With truck windows open, we watched as floats, horses, shiny vehicles, and a marching band proceeded toward us, then turned down Main Street.

The final float featured Santa in his fur-trimmed red velvet suit. Our daughters were overjoyed! Then the deputy motioned for us to go.

As we turned left, we joined the parade, right behind Santa Claus. Rusty and I were a little self-conscious but thankful that the truck was clean. Our girls smiled and waved to the people on either side of the road, throwing out the handfuls of candy they had received from the police officers and wishing everyone a "Merry Christmas!"

Immediately following our pickup was a flatbed trailer loaded with bales of hay. Overheard from the sidewalk, we heard one person say, "I can't believe they put a load of hay in the parade this year." Of course, we couldn't believe they put us in the parade that year.

Throughout the years, it's almost as if the world hushes and time stands still in celebration of the birth of Jesus. I am wishing you a heart full of memories past and new and that quiet peace and joy in the birth of the Christ child.



See other memories in the series.








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