Joyce and I have mutual family interests. Since my son Conrad and her daughter Jill are married, we have common interest in Conrad’s two children. They are our grandchildren. We are interested in Scott Hochstetler and his wife and two children. Scott is Joyce’s nephew and a choral director of Goshen College. So Joyce and I share events in the Sauder Concert Hall.
Scott often performs in the crowded hall. Joyce and I usually sit in the fifth row, but a friend and I persuaded Joyce to sit in the balcony where we could see the faces of the audience. As we began to move up the balcony I was introduced to a “Martin” woman from Lancaster County. I asked questions, as Mennonites do, and quickly learned that she is the daughter of Ed Martin who is the son of Paul H Martin who is my first cousin. Paul is five years older than I am and lives at Landis Homes.
After meeting Jessica I searched face book for family faces. A day after our meeting I scooted past the side board (a Greencroft eating place) and happened with face book memories to see Paul’s daughter seated at a table. We recognized each other as relatives and chatted for a while. Another person who will take greetings to cousin Paul.
In his earlier life, Paul had researched his family history and wrote a book about his father which he called, The Times and Tunes of a Mennonite Song Leader – Father’s Best Friend”. His best friend was his songbook This is a fantastic account of the life of Jacob Eby Martin, Paul’s father and my uncle. It is an ebook downloaded by clicking here.
Today, (11/4/2017) Joyce and I attended the memorial service for Verna Birkey the wife of Luke Birky. The Birky children and the children of Paul and Dorothy Hackman Martin grew up together in LaJunta, Colorada where Verna practiced nursing and Paul was pastor of the Mennonite Church. Several of Paul’s children came from Pennsylvana to the memorial service.
Most readers will likely know that I am playing the Mennonite game of making connection through relationships. In browsing for this post I discovered that a Goshen College alumna has created a Mennonite card game that he is marketing. To have the joy of playing it click here. I am not kidding!