Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Grading Gets my Goat

Debra and I are spending a lot of time this month grading student papers. A recent batch from her English 101 class (theme: the politics of food) had students reporting on what happened when they went to various places of food production -- farms and factories and so forth. Meanwhile, my students were writing about their worship experiences at churches whose worship was supposed to be "decidedly different" from their normal Sunday service.

The other day we were discussing with each other the similar responses our students had to things they'd seen on their field trips. You know the old saying about sausage tasting good, but you don't want to know how they make it? Turns out you could say the same thing about liturgy.

And how food is never quite as clean as you'd like it to be, even when it goes through the appropriate steps? Same thing with people and church.

But we laughed together at the student of Deb's who remarked about the farm she went to, and the goat who, at a moment when she wasn't paying attention, ate the sheet of paper on which she had written her notes.

"Not likely," said Deb, "that you'll find a student who ran into goat troubles on a worship field trip."

"Well," I responded, "I suppose that depends on how seriously they took my suggestion that they seek out a worship experience 'decidedly different' from their usual fare. I can think of a few contexts in which goats play a prominent role in worship."

Alas, no one ventured quite that far afield.

1 comment:

Nathan said...

Oh sure, the old "goat ate my homework" excuse.

(and wow about Inspiration Sensation!)