By Carter Berry
I have felt mild anxiety over the coronavirus chaos. In battling that anxiety, I have found that directing my gaze away from the news and onto the Lord and good things, like humor, has been especially life-giving. I am a subscriber to the online sports news and journalism outlet called The Athletic. They offer great stories and old-school, in-depth beat reporting. In the current COVID-19 world we live in, there are no sports and so The Athletic writing staff have put out some engaging hypothetical content. One of the most fun stories thus far was a theoretical “Hunger Games” of all of the MLB mascots…the LA Angels were victorious, thanks be to God.
With 12 of us fellows the numbers work well to do our own imaginary competition. To lay down some ground rules before we start, the arena will be McLean Presbyterian Church, anyone who leaves will be eliminated. Furthermore, there will be no killing, each fellow will be eliminated by having a flag pulled off their belt. Also, please keep in mind this is a fantasy world, so some liberties in the laws of physics will be taken, after all isn’t every reality subjective by nature anyways (ask John Kyle or Sarah Frances for more on that)? Anyways, without further ado, I present to you THE 1st (hypothetical) CAPITAL FELLOWS HUNGER GAMES!!!
Chapter 1 - All fellows start in their respective Sunday School classrooms; however, this is a breaking bread Sunday, so Alex, William, Esther, Nathalie, and I are in the kitchen. As the church bell rings to signal the start of the games, Brian starts leading worship in the sanctuary, immediately giving away his position and all heaven breaks loose in the kitchen. Alex comes straight for me flipping pancakes in my face as I hurl a volley of tater tots back at him. Esther and Nathalie form an alliance, meanwhile William is just trying to do something. I am overtaken by the pancakes as Alex takes my flag and bolts for the Fellowship Hall while Nathalie and Esther make swift work of William leaving him flagless and downcast. They subsequently tip-toe towards the stairs.
Eliminated: William, Carter B
Chapter 2 - Downstairs in the children’s ministry rooms Sarah Frances’ and Mollie’s ears turn quickly to Brian’s music and they race up the stairs and into the sanctuary only to find that the sweet melody was just a siren’s song set to lure in naive targets. Amy and Carter R ambush the unsuspecting duo and quickly grab their flags. The church staff fellows remain strong as Brian subtly winks at them and keeps on playing. Rachel and Laura are smart enough to stay put and defend, probably because Laura went to Northwestern. Did you know Laura went to Northwestern?
Eliminated: Sarah Frances, Mollie
Chapter 3 - Realizing that no one else is falling for their devious trap, Carter R and Amy betray all that they stand for and pull Brian’s flag before they move towards the Fellowship Hall where they find that a “couple of bois” are in there talking. Alex is clearly asking for advice on how to take the others down from, you guessed it, Rev. Dr. Bill Fullilove! An unfair advantage to be sure, but as Amy and Carter R race by to snatch Alex’s flag Bill utters something in an ancient Near-Eastern language and both Amy and Carter’s flags fall off instantaneously and Alex is teleported outside the room where Laura and Rachel have been hiding. Esther and Nathalie silently converge on the room from the opposite hallway.
Eliminated: Brian, Amy, Carter R
Chapter 4 - The “We’re fun-sized!” alliance, Nathalie and Esther, bursts into the room to find Laura and Rachel passing the time by studying for the LSAT and doing Orange Theory respectively. Laura, who studied at Northwestern, thinks quickly to distract Nathalie by pointing out a dog that was somehow in the hallway while Rachel grabs her flag. Esther counters quickly by eliminating Rachel as she dives at Nathalie. On the other side Alex jumps in much to Laura’s surprise and pulls her flag. Esther and Alex, the final 2 left standing, slowly turn towards one another. Wiping the sweat from his brow, Alex tips his cowboy hat and says, “I thought it’d come to this.” Esther responds as a piece of tumbleweed blows through Sunday School room 14, “Let the best man win.” The music starts and their feet become blurs as, somehow, a dance off begins. Pop! Lock! Jam! Break! Back and forth they go until Alex is left twisted up like a pretzel, allowing Esther to calmly and gracefully pull the final flag.
Eliminated: Nathalie, Rachel, Laura, Alex
Owning the title of Victor is a big deal, and I am sure Esther does not take that lightly; however, like I said earlier, it is important to take time to not feel the weight of all that’s going on right now. Jesus’ burden is light and if we take Him up on that, then we can feel free even when things feel stressful. As fellows, we are continuing to meet together on zoom and share the hard things and the fun things that come our way, we hope you are finding ways to do the same.
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