“The difference between the almost right word and the right word is really a large matter. ’tis the difference between the lightning bug and the lightning.” Mark Twain

Friday Fiction: "Alvin Josiah MacRaney III"

Welcome to my contribution to Fiction Friday at Patterings, hosted this week by Patty Wysong herself at her blog. Be sure to stop by there for more great fiction, (and a special post by Shirley Jump!) or to contribute your own fiction!

I know when we generally think of fiction, we think of stories--but this piece has been in my head all week (and it is definitely not true--so that makes it fiction, right?). I wrote this for the Faithwriters Writing challenge (and it did quite well). Hope you enjoy it!

Alvin Josiah MacRaney III

Alvin Josiah MacRaney III
was in ministry up to his eyes.
He gave to the needy, encouraged the weak,
and responded to many souls' cries.

MacRaney was part of a family of preachers;
the pulpit was part of their lore.
He learned the importance of loving the brethren
from his father and grandpa before.

Dear Alvin was praised by his plentiful flock
for the blessings he oft gave away.
They often sat speechless, in bounteous thanks
for the many he'd lift when he'd pray.

But MacRaney's great passion - and his congregants', too
was his preaching of God's holy Word.
His pastoral fervor and "gift of the gab"
were obvious to all those who heard.

"Repent! The Lord loves you," was his pulpit refrain.
"Each person's a great big fat sinner.
If you do your part and let Christ in your heart,
then God will see you as a winner."

He'd flip through his Bible, taking copious notes
(that no one but Alvin could read),
extracting the wisdom he'd share with the folks
whose souls he was aiming to feed.

He shared the Word boldly with those of his flock
and closed with a rousing "Amen."
He then put his congregants back in the toy box
and napped until "church time" again.

Thanks for reading! Don't forget to stop by Patterings for more great fiction!


  1. This is great, and funny too. Quite an unexpected end :)

    Good job.


  2. Oh how fun! I didn't see that ending coming at all!

  3. I love it! I had a good chuckle at the end - totally picturing the little boy. Well done.

  4. Awesomeness! Love it! The best short fiction always has a clever twist at the end!

  5. This was truly, absolutely and wholly delightful! Can you tell that I thoroughly enjoyed it? No wonder it did so well at FW! Blessings!

  6. Oh, you got me! Totally got me with that ending! (and I was expecting something! LoL)
    Love this! Soooo fun!


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