The Community Church is but a shadow of what it once was in IP. I used to hang with the guys who ran the Church's printing company when I was in the trade. We would help one another out on occasion, as they had some very talented people, but my company had some very modern equipment. They were decent, hard-working people, and sincerely believed in what they were doing. They took a lot of folk in that would have otherwise been on the dole or on the streets and gave them a home and purpose. There were certainly a lot of "crispy critters" up that way, as The Church would recruit at rock concerts. Even the old acid-heads that could barely keep it together had a job and meaning in the community, and the Church didn't ask for a penny in public funds. Even though Chris Braithwaite, the erstwhile editor of the Barton Chronicle generated a scandal about child abuse that rocked Vermont up to the supreme court level, cooler heads prevailed, and our State gave the Church their constitutional rights. I know Braithwaite. He's one hell of an editor, and has managed to put together a very durable and well-respected weekly in an age where newspapers are dropping like flies. I don't think much of him as a person, however. He scuttled the paper I used to write for to get the advertising revenue. Mr. Braithwaite is a little too bloody-minded for my taste, but he's a good journalist. The Honorable Judge Francis Mahady took it upon himself to defend the Church. Judge Mahady was a hell of a guy, in my experience. I was a junior reporter for a liberal weekly rag, and one of my beats was court. Mahady would give fair shake to just about anyone, but would have no truck with anyone that messed with children. He was a poor-looking fellow with a great mind, big ears, wretched hair, and a lank, scrawny frame. When he spoke, it was as if the Word of God was being laid down. He was that good. My Mum was the manager at a restaurant that the court frequented. Mahady once confided in her that he'd give anyone a fair shake except for a molester, who he would "hang off the dock." Judge Mahady died of a particularly nasty form of cancer. At his funeral, 400 members of the Community Church saw him on his way. He was their Shindler, and they paid due respect. Hats off. I had the opportunity to see how the Community Church dealt with their children. It were a little peculiar to me, but they did a good job and cherished them. I never heard a single harsh word, let alone an act of violence. When we'd let then use our equipment, there would often be kids as young as 10 or 12 in the group. They did real work, and could be directed with a word or two. They were beautiful. I've eaten more than a few meals at the Community's table. I felt welcome. They were certainly not nearly as spooky as some of those snake-handlers I ran into in the Bible Belt. Quite a rant, I know. Apologies. I just thought you FF's might want the truth.