An occasional series of reflections from parishioners on Emmanuel Church
Son of Rector (1937-1969), The Rev. Lee Marston
I think my very first job was working for Sam Marvin as a water boy in the Peach Orchard. And I got paid a huge amount of money…$2 a day, and I only had to work from 7:00 to 5:30! So it was more money than I’d ever had in my life. And that’s $0.20 an hour…I can remember the first Sunday I’d been taught to tithe, and I had made… something like…$10, maybe $11, and I didn’t have any change, and I put a dollar in the collection plate. I felt a little funny because it wasn’t quite ten percent, but very close. Anyway, Uncle Payton, at the end of the service asked me about my first job and everything, and then he said, “And Minor Lee, how much money did you put in the plate?” Well, I was very chagrined because I hadn’t put quite ten percent. So I said, “Uncle Payton, I only put a dollar in.” Well, my father was standing there, and he started to laugh. Then he started to roar. And I didn’t know what in the world was going on. And after Uncle Tom had left, I said, “Daddy – what was so funny?” He said, “Minor Lee, you put more in the collection plate than Uncle Peyton did.”
Daughter of Rector Lee Marston, who grew up in Marston LaRue House
My father’s dog, Betsy, had her puppies in the pipe organ. And we couldn’t have the organ play during the Sunday morning service because Betsy and her puppies were in the organ. And so we had to sing acapella. And my father had a very, very loud monotonal voice, and totally off-key, but he just sang, making a joyful noise to the Lord, always.
Emmanuel Rector (1969-1995)
Vietnam had entered its more controversial stance, and…regardless of feelings on Vietnam, pro or con, we prayed particularly for those men and women who were serving…There was one thing that seemed big at the time… Jesus Christ Superstar and Godspell were coming out and there was a lot of antagonism on that and I recall that with our Youth Group, we went to see it, and we came away talking about it, and we discussed it for weeks afterward in our Youth meeting. And it seemed to me that regardless of how controversial that was at the time, it opened up the ability to talk about these things.
Consolidating my experience at Emmanuel can be summed up in two-word sentences. Trust God. Help Others. My journey to Emmanuel began upon reconnecting with Randy Hudgins, an old tennis coach, and asking him about churches in the Charlottesville area. He had recently joined the EE family and could not be happier with the move. “Harp, the rector is a big Georgia Bulldogs fan and brings sports into his sermons. I think you’ll like him.” MaryKatherine and I visited the following week and that was all she wrote. JT knocked it out of the park, and we knew we found our home.
This was not the first time I met JT. He worked at the Diocese of Virginia in Richmond with my father in the early 90s. We have pictures of JT throwing me around in the Roslyn pool when I was 4 years old. God had a plan for us to meet again, and it was through the man who made me run hills when I double faulted. God also has an incredible sense of humor.
It has been such a blessing to serve Emmanuel as usher, and now in the Vestry. MaryKatherine and I have tremendous gratitude for each and every member for welcoming us with open arms and are eager to support our parish so that others may hear God’s message and find a home among us.