Sunday night the parson cacooned himself within the covers early. As was his custom on Sunday nights, no alarm was set to rouse him in the morning. On Monday mornings the parson crawled out of bed when the warmth of the covers no longer protected him from the day.
This night he fell asleep quickly. It had been a good day. The people had received his sermon gladly. A couple had talked to him of joining the church. And the Sunday evening Bible study had gone exceptionally well.
That Bible study the parson had resisted for years. Finally, he gave in on the condition that it be an actual Bible study. And so for the last two-and-a-half years almost every Sunday night had involved a study of the Bible. At first there had been some resistance to the parson's methodology. He had begun at Genesis 1: 1 and was proceeding through the books of the Bible, talking of the events that had shaped it, who wrote it, why they wrote it, pointing out the contradictions.
The “Bible-is-the-literal-word-of-God”-folks challenged him on the third week of the Bible. “But,” said their leader of that group, “the Book of Revelation says ….” The parson cut him off. “Look,” said the parson, “when it comes to Revelation, I will bow to your considerable knowledge. With regards to Revelation, you have read it much more than have I. In fact, I try not to read it. It involves some vision of terrible things that are going to happen in the future. I'm a follower of Christ. I concentrate on the wonderful things that are happening now. But, I don't want to ignore your point. As you're aware, we started with Genesis and we're going book by book through the Bible. We should get to Revelation in about, well, let's see, ah, about five years. So, please, hold that thought until then.”
They never came back. And so it was on Sunday night the parson and the Bible study participants looked critically at the differences in the stories told by the Deuteronomist storytellers and the Chronicler. The study had ended with the group focusing on the fact that the Chronicler left out anything that might reflect badly on David as an ideal king, especially leaving out the women. But the study ended with the observation that the Chronicler made a slip.
In 2 Chronicles 35: 25, he talks about “all the singing men and singing women” who mourn Josiah's death. So, concluded the parson and his group, the women did have a part to play after all. And supposing this was a Temple activity, the women had a more active part than the Chronicler's version led his hearers to believe.
Monday morning arrived. The parson rose. He switched his iPad on and began to surf the web for the news. After acquainting himself with what was happening, he looked for stories about March madness. There it was on almost every newspaper and magazine available on the device. There were the men's brackets, the rankings, the dark horses, all in the NCAA Men's tournament. The parson spent twenty minutes looking for the brackets, the rankings, the favorites, the dark horses of the NCAA Women's Tournament. He couldn't find any reference. It was as if Women's Collegiate Athletics did not exist.
Amazing, six hundred years before Jesus the storytellers left the women out, and still today few would admit they, also, occupied the court.