The Reverend Dewey Dubois and his late wife Doris had only one child. That child would be Marty Dubois who happens to be father to the infamous Johnny. Now the Reverend’s wife died some twenty years ago from Colon Cancer, and he sorely missed her. Marty and his father Dewey never got along, not even when he was a little boy. This is probably due to the fact that Marty was a smart aleck and very stubborn who never learned to take criticism well.
Marty moved out of his childhood home when he was just 17 and lived with various relatives until he turned 18. He was able to get a job at the town’s paper mill and he is still there 34 years later. Shortly after he found a job at the paper mill, he met and married his wife Iva who is a cashier at Needham’s Fine Cuts. The two have been married just over 33 years, but I wouldn’t say it was a sweet union. Marty and Iva stay together mostly because no one else would want them but also because they have nothing better to do with their time.
The Reverend Dubois and his son never speak even though they live in the same small town. Marty has learned over the years how to avoid his father at all costs. He has a hatred for him, but not even Marty is sure why. It may have had to do with The Reverend being, well a Reverend. Dewey was the kind of father who religiously followed the Proverbs 22:6 “Train up a child in the way he should go and when he is old he will not depart from it” philosophy, as well as the “spare the rod, spoil the child” philosophy. It could also be due to the fact that The Reverend was always helping someone in need, and Marty felt neglected because of it.
So even though they both lived in the same town, Marty, and his father rarely ever crossed paths with each other. This was not the case with Johnny and his father, Marty. They happened to be employed by The Sandyhill Springs Paper Mill, although they worked different shifts, they still saw each other most every day. For the most part Johnny and his father got along; they had their differences but agreed on one thing, avoid The Reverend.
Johnny and his grandfather had never really been allowed to interact with each other, mostly because Marty and Iva kept their distance while Johnny was growing up, even to the point of keeping Johnny a secret for the 1st year of his life. Due to the nature of the relationship between Marty and Dewey it wasn’t really that hard, if you overlooked how small the town was.
Having a record increased the chances that Johnny would run into his Grandfather at the jailhouse, and that is usually where they would cross paths. The Reverend Dewey frequented the jailhouse every week to counsel wayward souls and help anyone that was in need. Most of the people locked up were in for petty crimes and it was usually just for a few days, though there were some in for longer stays.
The Reverend was a kindly gentleman somewhat more relaxed from his earlier days, and he made friends everywhere he went, so the men and woman locked up were usually happy to see him come for his weekly visit. He often brought goodies with him, and this made him ever more poplar, due to the state of the food they had to choose from. Dewey also made sure to bring in several Reader’s Digest copies, as well as Guideposts and Devotionals for the inmates to read.
Often when Johnny had been picked up for some petty crime, Dewey would be at the jail house making his usual rounds. They would see each other, but never once had they even said hello. Johnny hated his Grandfather, just like his father did, but Johnny secretly wished he and his Grandfather had a relationship. It wasn’t like anything had happened between Johnny and Dewey, they had just never spent time together…ever, and Marty had made sure of that.
Dewey prayed faithfully every day that God would bring him and Johnny together someday. He so wanted to be a real Grandfather to Johnny, to be a sort of mentor to him. Dewey and Marty had never gotten along, he knew he should have tried harder with his son, but at the time he was just so busy with his congregation.
The parishioners from Sandyhill Fellowship Friends Church needed their Pastor for everything, from death of a loved one, to divorce; their needs never seemed to end. Looking back Dewey knew that the break down in his relationship with his son was his fault. Once he tried to talk to Marty, to apologize for being an absent father, but Marty refused to speak to him and went so far as to tell Dewey to never come near him or his family or Dewey would be sorry.
Dewey thought it best to leave it alone, he had seen what Marty was capable of, he didn’t need to try again, and he knew there wasn’t a chance that Marty would forgive him. God could change Marty’s heart, but The Reverend thought it best to just take himself out of God’s way and let God do His thing. After all God had never needed Dewey’s help, and although He’d sure asked it many times, Dewey was content to leave it all at his Father’s feet
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I believe in the sun even when it is not shining. I believe in love even when I feel it not. I believe in God even when He is silent. *Written on a wall in a concentration camp*