2023 Benson Days

Beats tapped through one silver whistle
signal the Saint Paul Benson Flag Corp
beginning their well-rehearsed routine

dropping, carving, and fluttering
2023 Benson Days
Benson Parade 2023

Beats tapped through one silver whistle
signal the Saint Paul Benson Flag Corp
beginning their well-rehearsed routine

dropping, carving, and fluttering
the air about them with fabulous
red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and
violet-colored flags.

Proudly swinging poles in unity
keeping each move in the “toaster”
taking care no one gets in harm’s way.

Needing less expertise for banner
carriers although one is still challenged.
Tweeeet! Everyone’s left foot-step out now!

Level the banner, center on the
median line marked on the road.
Tweeeet! Left foot! Tweeeet!

Yet concentration falls away
once throngs appear before us and we
truly “see” neighbors on sidewalks passed
while extending greetings and waving

then this energetic extrovert’s
unexpected, silly antics warm up
up the crowd until laughing aloud.

Imagine asking kids in the crowd
for a tootsie roll or especially
their own bag of candy?! 

Look back in your memories and
remember an especially cool
summer day when you were celebrating
and all smiled because
those grumpy ones stayed home.


Matthew 14:13-21

Now when Jesus heard this, he withdrew from there in a boat to a deserted place by himself. But when the crowds heard it, they followed him on foot from the towns.

When he went ashore, he saw a great crowd; and he had compassion for them and cured their sick.

When it was evening, the disciples came to him and said, “This is a deserted place, and the hour is now late; send the crowds away so that they may go into the villages and buy food for themselves.”

Jesus said to them, “They need not go away; you give them something to eat.”

They replied, “We have nothing here but five loaves and two fish.”

And he said, “Bring them here to me.”

Then he ordered the crowds to sit down on the grass. Taking the five loaves and the two fish, he looked up to heaven, and blessed and broke the loaves, and gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the crowds.

And all ate and were filled; and they took up what was left over of the broken pieces, twelve baskets full.

And those who ate were about five thousand men, besides women and children.

Jesus was a rock star of his day, drawing people who walked for days to see him. He touched their souls with words they barely dared to know as true in their hearts. These were people who had been harmed by temple taxes and laws of purity that were impossible to keep. People today are still confused, feeling fragile, and unworthy. Like the people of Jesus’ time, we yearn to hear for ourselves the revolution Jesus has to offer.

Looking into the eyes of our Benson neighbors last Saturday, was a reminder of the beautiful, mixed ethnicities of the people who live around us. How we offer spiritual or physical food is up to all the people of the church. The promises of the five loaves and two fishes remain alive. We accept the gifts each have recieved in order to release, ask for God’s blessings, and send you forth to share love, acceptance, forgiveness, and hope with the people.
We pray for you and send blessings upon you!
Rev. Marta Wheeler