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One Woman's Opinion

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Double day fun at Christ Church

by Mary Wakefield Buxton
Urbanna, Va.— Last Saturday Christ Church Parish sponsored two fun events all in one day. First on the agenda was the annual fashion show card luncheon charitable fundraiser. We had been promised both “fun and elegance” when we bought tickets to the event.

Elegance, I soon discovered, was the tuxedo-attired men from the church brotherhood: Doug Brizendine, Garry Clay, Llew Samuel, David South, Don Stebbins and David Wilcox. They looked a little like a fabulous flock of penguins waiting to serve the ladies. Let the fun and elegance begin.

My personal server was David Wilcox of Deltaville who introduced himself as “Davide,” a very fine French pronunciation to be sure. It takes a good sport to wait on my table. The lucky person knows perfectly well he could be reading all about how he inspired my pen to a vision of penguins in next week’s Sentinel.  

Lunch, prepared by Betty Evans and Ellen Johnson and their team of hard working volunteers, consisted of three-cheese-quiche, tossed salad, blueberry muffin topped off by an exorbitant double chocolate brownie ala mode served  up with wine or iced tea. Music was provided by Bob Flinn on the piano.

The models were both attractive and slender: Lileth Andersen, Jody Anglin, Belle Brenner, Jean Hill, Theresa Liverman, Judy Mansfield, Marilyn South, Barbara Shaw, Karin Stebbins, and the very fine Deltaville artist, Anne Wilcox. Fall fashions were presented by Bristow’s Store and Cyndy’s Bynn.

The outfits were stunning. Some of my favorite styles from Bristow’s were  handsome red jackets; a red wool jacket set off with black stretch slacks and red and black accessories and a corduroy jacket matched with designer jeans modeled by Barbara Shaw, who looked knock-out gorgeous.

Cyndy’s Bynn had their usual eye-catching collection. I especially liked Judy Mansfield in a lavender gossamer blouse set off with sateen pants in a slightly darker shade, and Jody Anglin in a black skirt with an inch of lace petticoat showing along the hemline and a bejeweled blouse.

Cyndy’s Bynn’s models featured a plethora of over-sized handbags in every color whereas Bristow’s Store featured their usual classy line of small smart leather purses by Brighton. Both stores offered a variety of belts, scarves, hats and jewelry to complement the outfits.

Father Paul Andersen and Betsy Bristow took turns introducing the models. The best rejoinder of the day was Paul’s introduction of his wife saying, “And if I weren’t already married, I would find this model most attractive!”

Later, we packed “Lord” and “Lady” in the car and drove back to church for the annual blessing of the animals that afternoon. This year there were many varieties of dogs and cats along with a trio of Guinea hogs from Sunnyside Farm that grunted and squealed throughout the service. Also in the menagerie were three leashed barky Pomeranians, a Jack Russell terrier that danced circles around the noble grouping of labs and retrievers, topped off by an African grey bird perched on the finger of Dr. John Hawkins, which let out a squawk every time Father Paul crossed himself.

“Lord” and “Lady” were eager for their blessing, so when Father Paul called for them to line up for the rite they immediately muscled their way to the head of the line. Initially I thought it was pure “religiosity” that had caused their enthusiasm, but then I saw that Father Paul was handing a doggie biscuit to each pet after the blessing. Of course, “Lord” and “Lady” were not interested in the treat, only the prayer, but when it was time to go I noticed “Lady” poked her head back in the treat basket for seconds. Not the most religious behavior, I should think.

Father Paul prayed a special prayer for pets: “Oh heavenly father, let us remember that your goodness showers down upon every living thing and flows through all your creatures! Grant to our beloved pets healthy and happy lives and a peaceful ending when it is time for life to be done.”

As we left the church I talked to fellow dog lover, Lileth Andersen, and we both wished dogs lived much longer than they do. She had her dear aging 13-year old “Francesca” on a leash, which Father Paul often writes about in his monthly newsletter to the parish.

“Dogs go to heaven too,” Lileth said. I agreed.

Let the rest of the Christianity argue over the number of angels on the head of a pin. On the fate of dogs, at least two Episcopalians totally agree.

Amen and alleluia! ©2009

Mary Wakefield Buxton’s new book, “Middlesex Memories,” will be available soon. For more information, visit

posted 10.15.2009

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