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News and views from the German-language region of Europe

May 28, 2005

Among friends

Filed under Back in the USA

One reason why franchises do so well is that people get accustomed to a certain style, layout or taste – or a combination – and like going back to something familiar. That's the way it was when I attended church services today as a visitor in Dallas, Texas.

Actually the first franchise operation has been around for quite a long time. A Catholic who attends mass in whatever country will find that the mass is pretty much the same, even if the language is different.

Monica, her dad and I have been associated with the church of God for over 35 years. So when we got to the service hall, everything was somehow familiar, even though we were there for the first time. A friendly greeting, a familiar hymnal for the congregational hymns, a congregation of various ages ranging from a year or so in age up to my father-in-law's 84 (and he was not even the oldest person in attendance, as I found out later).

The format for services was familiar: opening hymns followed by an opening prayer, a sermonette, another hymn, announcements, and after another hymn the main sermon. Interestingly, I knew the man giving the main sermon – he had lived in Germany from 1992-95.

It seemed to me there was a sense of zeal evident in the congregation.

When we left the group to return to our daughter's home (where we are visiting), we were happy to have had the opportunity to fellowship in a foreign but familiar environment.

We were truly among friends today during our visit with the Dallas congregation of the Living Church of God.

Paul Kieffer's blog with personal insights and news from the German-language region in Europe.


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