A Memoir       
Don Lehman

Chapter 2

Chapter 1 1946-1951
Chapter 2 1950-1952
Chapter 3 1952-1957
Chapter 4 1957-1961
Chapter 5 1961-1962
Chapter 6 1962-1966
Chapter 7 1966-1973
Chapter 8 1973-1977
Chapter 9 1977-1983
Chapter 10 1983-1988
Chapter 11 1988-1991
Chapter 12 1991-1996
Chapter 13 1996-2002
Chapter 14 2002-2012
Chapter 15 2012-2014
Chapter 16 2014-2016
Chapter 17 2016



In the 1950s we had difficulty with men burglarizing the store in the night. Since we lived next door, the idea of people breaking into the store was frightening for me, however, I generally felt safe in our house. Daddy rigged up a homemade alarm system attached to the doors that would ring a buzzer in our house if any of the doors at the store were forced open in the night. Several times I was awakened in the night by the alarm. It was creepy knowing one or more people were right next door stealing from us. These events presented a dilemma for Daddy because he was reluctant to involve the police, however, he did call the police. There was a deputy who lived across the street in the early 1960s. If he was home, he was quick to respond even if he was not on duty. I remember at least one occasion near Christmas when burglars were captured and held in jail. I went with Daddy when he took groceries and clothes to their families.

When I was five or six, I was playing in the back yard. We had clothes lines for drying laundry. The clothes lines had posts with a horizontal cross pipe so that two lines could be strung from each post. I rolled a wooden barrel over to the post and set it upright. I then climbed onto the barrel to reach the cross pipe. I used the pipe like a monkey bar, hanging upside down from my knees. We called it “skinning the cat.” I was having fun, until I slipped. When I fell, my armpit was torn on the metal edge at the top of the barrel. I held my arm tight to my side and went into the store to find Mother. I told her that I hurt my arm. She asked me to wait until she was finished helping the customer. I asked a few times. I guess she was used to my interruptions because she put me off for a while. When she finally took a look at my right armpit I knew by her reaction that I had a major gash! They rushed me to the hospital emergency room. I remember the rubber mask and the smell of gas. Someone told me to count to ten. I think I only made it to three. I had several stitches and my arm was in a sling for a few days. I still have scars from the stitches. That’s the only time I was taken to the hospital, though I went to the chiropractor quite often. The next time I went to the hospital I was sixty-six years old.

Since Daddy and Mother preferred chiropractors, I sometimes got treatments for a cold but I also got treatments for nervousness. I think they hoped it would help my stammering. Sometimes Daddy would drop me off for a treatment and take care of some business in town, then stop back to pick me up. Our chiropractor was Dr. Hill. His office was in the basement of their lovely house on Mealey Parkway, a rich section of Hagerstown. He would massage my back, stretch my legs and crack my neck. Then he would put me under large, black plastic panels that may have been ultra sound but frankly I have no idea what it was. I remember it felt warm. He would leave the room and when he came back it was obvious that he had smoked a cigarette. He was a kind and gentle man. On a few occasions my treatment was over before Daddy returned. He would take me upstairs to their fine living room and turn on TV cartoons. I loved that! Sometimes he gave me a toy his son had outgrown.

Mother once took me to a medical doctor for my stammering. His name was Dr. Bell. He was large, had a deep voice, talked slowly and looked over his glasses. Picture a Saturday Evening Post, Norman Rockwell painting. He sat on a low stool in front of me and asked some simple questions. I stammered out the answers. Finally he looked over his glasses and said, “You... need...to...talk...slower.” That was that! I don’t know how much that advice cost my parents. I remember many times coming to my Mother with some exciting bit of news and having trouble getting the words out. She would stop me and tell me to slow down and start over. Sometimes I didn’t want to continue telling the story. The subject had changed from the exciting news to my speaking difficulty. It was frustrating. I also remember Mother telling me to not frown. In some of the snapshots I have from my childhood, I have a frowning expression. I was, to some extent, an anxious child.

Maugansville is a small unincorporated community located near the Mason-Dixon Line. There was no police or mayor. One or two of the male citizens may have been deputized but it was never much of an issue. I don’t remember any crime other than our store break-ins that would be investigated by a county sheriff, or a possible drunken disorder. That was quickly handled by neighbors. There was a post office and a combination lumberyard and grain elevator. Next door to the grain elevator there was a lunchroom run out of the front room of a residence. There were two auto repair garages with gas pumps, and a very small milk bottling company. In the sixties, a new post office was built next door to our house and a Sinclair filling station opened just beyond the post office. The Sinclair logo included a green dinosaur. There were two farm implement businesses. The John Deere dealership, located just east of town near the I-81 ramp was owned by my Mother’s brother, Uncle Leroy. There was one church that was Pentecostal which we referred to as the “Holy Rollers.” I was curious and once on a Sunday night, crept up and tried to look in the windows. It looked pretty normal. There was no ethic diversity in our little town and we didn’t even think about it being an issue. We knew that the majority of the area’s African Americans lived in a condensed community within the city of Hagerstown along Jonathan Street. We referred to that part of town as the “colored section.” The African American kids went to a separate school until the late 1950’s.

I think it made me feel special that the local people in Maugansville and the surrounding area came to our store. Even though we dressed different and did not socialize, I felt, somewhat, integrated into the community. Daddy did not join the Ruritan Club and Mother did not join the Homemakers Club. I was not permitted to join the Boy Scouts or any other community organizations. To my parents, the Boys Scouts seemed militaristic with their olive green uniforms and the civic organizations involved too much mixing with “the world.” However, we were an important part of the community.

I liked living in the center of Maugansville. Our house and general merchandise store was on Main Street near the fire hall and the Post Office. People walked to the store or stopped in on their way to work or on their way home. Some worked at the lumber yard and grain elevator. We knew people who worked at Fairchild Aircraft, near the airport, and some who worked a few miles away in Hagerstown at manufacturing plants such as Moller Organ or Pangborn Manufacturing. I recognized everyone in our village. I spent many hours in the store and the neighborhood was comfortable and familiar. At the same time, we were clearly different in that we were one of a handful of Mennonites in the village. We did not socialize beyond conversation in the store and I was aware that there was still some hostility toward Mennonites for not being willing to fight in the wars. World War II was a recent memory. There were quite a few veterans, and Air Raid Drills. When the fire alarm was sounded everyone was required to turn out their lights. Our neighbor Mr. Mowen, was a local official so he and others walked the street with flashlights to make sure everyone complied. There were Civil Defense drills when sirens signaled and we followed directions at school. Those drill became known as “duck and cover” because that’s what we were told to do. I remember nightmares of war involving red planes flying in formation and jackboots stomping through our house while I hid in a cupboard. I would wake up terrified and realize that I was safe in my bed. The Russians were not really in our house and they were not attacking, at least not yet.

I had two feelings: I felt safe in my family and yet we were pacifists. We would not physically defend ourselves. I knew all of our neighbors and yet we were different in ways that confused me. The non-Mennonites and even the non-religious seemed just as happy and content as my parents, but we were going to heaven when we died and even if we suffered in life we would have an eternal reward. Well, I was discontent. I wanted to experience all that life had to offer, which included many things that I was told would send me to eternal damnation to be tortured in hell fire.

I was secretly rebellious toward my religious family but most of the time that was not my focus. We were a family and these were my parents. They provided for me. I mostly felt a degree of normalcy because the religion was what I knew and I was not alone with it. I had friends that seemed to be experiencing a similar ambivalence. Ironically, most of those friends have remained church-goers as adults.

At the time we did not hear people talk about post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) but in retrospect, there were several WWII veterans in our little town who were unable to work and some alcoholics who were obviously suffering from this illness. The ones who were on permanent disability and the ones who drank and could not work.

Like many small towns, there was one mentally handicapped man and ours liked to hitchhike in and out of Hagerstown. He would hold stones in his hand and when drivers did not stop to pick him up he would become angry and throw the stones at the cars! Most people who knew him would give him a ride.

In the 1940s and 50s, Fairchild Aircraft built cargo planes a few miles from Maugansville. The plant was located along Route 11, the major north and south highway at that time. I watched as the big planes were tested overhead and I built crude wooden models. The factory had three shifts. While Maugansville’s Main Street was not a major route, when the shifts changed there was heavy traffic for twenty or thirty minutes between four and five o’clock every afternoon. This was a busy time in the store and the only time I saw customers that we did not know personally.

Maugansville remained unchanged through the 1950s until the Maryland portion of Interstate 81, linking Pennsylvania to West Virginia, was finished. It passed within 2 miles of our village, affecting traffic patterns. In the early 60s, Mack Truck manufacturing built a large plant near the I-81 Maugansville exit, moving many workers from a plant somewhere in New Jersey. Many of those workers, moving from New Jersey, chose Maugansville as their new home.

I enjoyed riding my bike. At the age of nine or ten, I was permitted to start riding on the streets of the village. I played with a neighbor boy named Jerry. Sometimes we pretended our bikes were motorcycles. He wanted me to call him “Carson” when we were doing make-believe.

Our next door neighbor was Mr. Eshelman. He lived with his brother and sister in a white two story house with porches. They had a large yard with a thorny barberry hedge. A looping driveway entered at the edge of our property and extended to a carriage style garage and exited at the opposite side of the house. Beside the garage, there was a vegetable garden. At the back of the property there was another yard and small orchard. A portion of the driveway featured a row of tall lilac bushes. In the summer, Mr. Eshelman would knock on our door with big bouquets of lilacs and for days our house would be filled with the smell of flowers. All three of the Eshelmans were elderly and unmarried. Lilly had been a missionary. Harry was an alcoholic and had a sofa in the garage where he spent his days drinking. Ira was a cabinet maker at the Fairchild Aircraft plant. He would request my help with yard work. I helped him rake leaves, mow grass and trim hedges. I didn’t mind the yard work but I didn’t like working in the vegetable garden. After helping for several hours on a Saturday, I could count on him reaching into his pocket and giving me a quarter or two. Even then it was small payment but I think I accepted it graciously. One Christmas he gave me a finely crafted small walnut chest. I valued it and it is still here on my studio shelf 60 years later.

I liked building things with scraps of wood. I made what I called “go carts.” They were basically a piece of wood with wheels and some sort of seat. The challenge was to attach wheels that would turn freely and would not fall off. Another problem to be solved was the steering mechanism. These carts did not have a motor, so of course I would need to push a friend or talk someone into pushing me.

The Brewers lived directly across from us on Main Street. Mr. and Mrs. Brewer had a daughter named Joyce who was my brother Nate’s age and a son Eddie who was my sister Janice’s age. I sometimes played with Eddie even though he was older than me. They had one of the first TV sets in our village and on a few occasions I got invited in to watch. Eddie’s Dad smoked a pipe and their house smelled different than ours. I liked the way it smelled. Sometimes I would say to Eddie, “Let’s go in and watch TV”, and he would say, “There’s nothing on.” I knew there was something on and I would have watched anything! Eddie’s Mother, Edith, was pleasant and helped out in the post office. His Dad, Bill, had the gas station and auto repair garage next to the house. Eddie had a go cart with a motor. One year, on summer evenings, when he had that go cart, he would speed up and down the street. I was envious of that go cart!

Eddie’s Dad made a big impression on me. In many ways he was the opposite of Daddy. While they both had businesses, Bill’s attitude was much more casual. Daddy said, “The customer is always right.” Bill was more like, I’ll be fair and do good work, but life is to be enjoyed. He had a great laugh, was competent and successfully fixed cars, but at five o’clock every day, he stopped working and stood in front of his open overhead door, waved to people passing by and fiddled with his pipe. If anyone pulled up to the gas pump he waved them away calling out, “We’re closed, go on down to Dick’s.” Dick’s was short for Dietrick’s, a competitor located down over the railroad tracks. A few older men liked to stand around and chat with him after hours. He had a blue three-wheel Harley Davidson motorcycle with a trunk where he put his tools. He used it for service calls. More than once I saw him kick start it and head out to help someone who was broken down. He would go, rain or shine! He worked under cars so his clothes and hands were greasy. Bill kept cats and I remember him leaning over to rub the pets and talking to them. On Saturday afternoon, after he closed the garage, he would bathe, put on fresh clean work clothes and have a few drinks. Early Monday morning he was back at work on cars and happy to stop and pump gas for anyone who tooted their horn at his pump. After he had those drinks on Saturday, he would walk across the street to our store in a very jolly mood. While he always seemed to be in good spirits, he was even more so and very talkative on these occasions. If there were Mennonites shopping in the store he would joke and tease, telling them he was coming to church on Sunday morning. We sold fresh oysters in season. He would buy a pint of select oysters and a box of saltine crackers. While he was standing around joking he would place raw oysters on crackers and eat them. When I was seven or eight years old, he shared them with me. It was great eating raw oysters with him and he got a big kick out of me eating them! We also kept a wheel of sharp cheese on top of the meat counter. When he was ready to head back across the street, he would take a big wedge of cheese with him. One night when one of the Mennonite men began asking when their car would be repaired, Bill frightened me by telling the man it was my fault that it was not finished. In a serious tone, he said he was waiting for me to come help him finish the work. That night I remember going outside the store and praying that it was not really my fault. One Christmas morning, before we went to church, he knocked on the door. He was dressed in a full Santa suit and gave us oranges and candy. Since we did not celebrate Christmas with a tree and and fancy gifts it was a real funny and happy treat! I liked to go into the garage to watch him work. Somehow I learned that he had “pin ups” taped to the inside of a parts cabinet behind a wall of shelves. Sometimes when he went out to pump gas I would sneak back and look at those pictures. His work ethic and happy attitude made a big impression on me in contrast to my parents’ serious and anxiety-filled religious lives.

When I was in my early teens, Bill hired me to paint the trim around the windows and soffits of the garage. Shortly after that, I was hired by a family who lived at the south east corner at Main Street and Showalter Road to paint all the trim on their house and garage. It was a lot of work and took several weeks that summer. I remember being surprised that I was given so much responsibility and concerned that I was not doing a professional job. I just rode my bicycle to their house and painted. I don’t remember how much I was paid.

The large grain elevator and lumber yard was next to the railroad tracks a few blocks from our house. The lumber yard had a cabinet shop with a constant pile of discarded pieces of wood. I would scavenge through the wood pile for usable scraps. I built shacks behind our garage. They were like little clubhouses though I didn’t have a club or club members. It was mostly about the process of building and having a place for myself.

I was not a big kid and my first bike was a special event. When Daddy brought it home, I was disappointed because he had bought a large bike so I would, “grow into it,” but in order for me to ride he had purchased a girl’s style without the top bar. There was no way I wanted to ride a girl’s bike. I remember the conflict but not the resolution. I think it was exchanged for a regular boy’s bike. I also remember many bike-related experiences. I worked on my bikes, attaching head and tail lights, speedometers and sirens. My friends and I would use clothespins to attach bubblegum baseball cards so they rubbed the wheel spokes. When we rode, the cards would flip against the spokes making a motor sound! We also tied balloons to the front fork so that they rubbed the spokes. It made a great motor sound until it popped. We loved it when it popped because it made a sound similar to a car backfiring!

One of the problems with a boy’s bike, especially if it is too big for you is that, if the chain is too loose and pops off when you are really pumping the pedals you will definitely crack your “nuts!” If there was no one around when that happened to me, I would swear and cry from the pain.

The only sidewalk on our street was in front of Miss Maugan’s house. That’s where I roller- skated. My parents bought me roller skates on the advice of a doctor who said it would help correct my right foot that was slightly turned in. We called it “pigeon-toed.” I didn’t want to be pigeon-toed and I liked rollerskating so it worked out. The old style roller skates fit onto your shoe. They grabbed your heel and had adjustable clamps at the front to grab the sole of your shoe. A special key was used to adjust the length and the front clamps. Mostly we kept the key on a shoe string and wore it around our neck so we did not lose it. (Melanie (Safka), “Brand New Key”)

One day, after getting my first big bike, I was riding along the street near our house. When coming up behind a much older boy, I made a beeping sound to let him know I was approaching from behind. He stepped to the left just as I was about to pass on the left. He was carrying a large paper bag of groceries from the store. I don’t remember the crash but I was told that groceries went flying and I did some flying myself, right over the handlebars. I was knocked unconscious and lost a sizable chip off one of my front teeth. Apparently, the boy I hit was not injured because he carried me back the half block to my house. That broken tooth was part of my “look” until I got upper dentures when I was 12 years old and starting the 7th grade.

My parents had dentures and at twelve, it seemed like getting dentures was a normal, grown-up thing to do. We did not have good dental care or hygiene. I started saving early. I had a small, cloth drawstring bag that I kept my savings in. I hid it in a hole in the wall behind my dresser. I remember getting my last upper teeth pulled and having the dentures fitted. There was not a bit of embarrassment on my part, in fact, I entertained friends by using the dentures to make strange faces. I was in my early thirties when I completed the set and got lower dentures. My parents and my siblings, all had complete sets of dentures.

We went to church each Sunday morning and many Sunday evenings. The Sunday evening meetings were sometimes called “Youth Meetings” and teenagers were given topics to speak on. On Wednesday evenings we went to prayer meetings or bible studies. The men always sat on one side of the church sanctuary and women sat on the other side. I sat on either side until probably around the age of four when I started sitting with Daddy. I remember when I would get sleepy and lean against him, his wool suit coat was scratchy and irritated my face. He sometimes carried Lifesaver peppermints that he would share with me. At around the age of twelve we could begin to sit with our friends toward the back of the church. This gave us an opportunity to trade furtive glances with girls. While many churches have accommodations for kneeling, one of the odd traditions of the Mennonites in our area was to get on our knees and turn toward the bench during prayer. This was also an opportunity to sneak a glance toward the girls’ side of your row of benches.

Sometimes we had a week of “revival meetings” or “evangelistic meetings.” These usually featured a visiting preacher. There were certain preachers who were particularly talented and dramatic. These preachers were in demand and traveled from church to church. The meetings would often end with tragic stories of people who died without being “saved” and faced eternity in Hell fire with Satan. Then an invitation would be given for people to raise their hands or walk up to the front to ask for forgiveness or to accept Jesus as their Savior. This also meant that you would join the church and be baptized if you were not already a member. When the invitation was given, a song was sung. We sang songs like, “Are You Washed in the Blood of the Lamb” or ‘Just as I Am Without One Plea.” This is when I would often struggle with feelings of guilt and fear!

One of the most popular evangelists when I was young was George R. Brunk. He traveled with two 18-wheelers. One trailer contained a large tent, folding chairs for hundreds of people, and generators to power lights and amplifiers. The other opened at the side to become a stage. The event would be set up in a local farmer’s open field. There was sawdust on the ground and as the sun went down the atmosphere was theatrical. On summer nights for a week we would go to the tent revival meetings. It was at one of those meetings that I decided that I wanted to join the church. I was about nine or ten years old. It was considered young but some of my friends were also joining. We went through a short study course and were baptized by a Mennonite bishop who sprinkled water on our heads in a special baptism ceremony. Mennonites are “Anabaptists” and do not do infant baptism. Baptisms are administered by choice after the “age of accountability.” This must be similar to the “age of reason” generally accepted as seven to eleven years old. “Accepting Jesus” and joining the church also meant that I would wear a “plain” suit to church. Any suit that was purchased for me would now have the collar removed and would be altered to button to the top just like the grown-ups. I never liked that and only wore it to church. I did not want my non-Mennonite friends to see me dressed that way. The Mother of a local Maugansville friend gave my Mother a suit that her son was not using. It was a light blue, cool, summer seersucker fabric. I would have loved to have worn it. Mother had it altered in the Mennonite style. I thought it looked ridiculous and I don’t remember ever wearing it.

In addition to George R. Brunk, another popular evangelist was Myron Augsburger. I don’t recall him using a tent but he was the closest thing we had to a celebrity. I say that because he was handsome and had a beautiful speaking and singing voice. He could recite “The Creation” by James Weldon Johnson. I was not used to that kind of dramatic recitation. I was mesmerized!

Occasionally, Daddy would initiate “family devotions.” I guess it was after revival meetings. We would all sit in the living room. Daddy would read from the Bible or we would take turns reading. Then we would sing hymns, the part I liked, since I would get to choose a song. I think it was also Mother’s favorite part and she would sing out in a clear soprano voice. Daddy would sing, too, but he struggled to stay on key. At the end we would get on our knees and turn toward our chair and Daddy would do a long prayer. Sometimes he would ask each one of us to pray. I didn’t like that because I didn’t know what to say. The whole affair seemed somewhat awkward and arbitrary. I think Mother and Daddy thought it was the right thing to do but it was mostly skipped as their lives became busy with day to day activities.

I remember sometimes, late in the evening, seeing Mother with her black stockings removed and her long hair let down and brushed out. She seemed almost like a different person, someone more relaxed and more free.

Daddy taught little lessons that he thought were important. When we arrived home after church, evening services, it was late. For some reason, we siblings, rushed to the door, pushing to be first while Daddy sorted through his keyring to unlock the door. I remember Daddy, paraphrasing from the Bible, saying, “The first shall be last and the last shall be first.” The one who had pushed to the front had to trade places with the person who was last. It gave us something to think about.

My favorite family time was in the summer after 8 pm when the store was closed. We would sometimes sit in the yard on our metal lawn chairs until after dark. People waved as they walked or drove by. It was a time that I seemed to have the attention of my parents. When it got dark, Janice and I would chase fireflies until it was time for bed.

We went to a small church that had once been a one room school house. Our meetings were pretty informal. Before I was born there had been disagreements between the ultra-orthodox Mennonites in Washington County where Mother had grown up and the somewhat little less restricted Franklin County churches. Daddy had grown up in the Franklin County churches. There was a notorious bishop controlling the Washington County group named Moses Horst. Daddy and Mother chose to go with a group that started the Eshelman’s church near Stateline, PA, part of the Franklin County group. At that time Moses was still a ruling bishop and he would not recognize our church as legitimate, therefore, we did not have our own church officials. That was unique because it meant that we did not have a preacher or deacons. On alternate Sundays we had a bishop or visiting preacher from one of the other Franklin County churches who, unlike Moses Horst, accepted our legitimacy. On those Sundays we sat through a sermon. On the Sundays we did not have a sermon or official service, we had Sunday school and sang songs. We were rebels! At least that’s sort of how it felt. Sadly, in the last two decades of my parents’ lives, they became more conservative and went back to the Washington County churches.

I liked it when we did not have a sermon. Most of the families were young and there was an emphasis on the children. The men sat on benches to the left facing the front and women sat on the right. Children were usually split, girls with mothers and boys with fathers. The typical service consisted of opening songs chosen and led by a “song leader” There was no piano, organ or musical instruments of any kind. The singing was strictly a capella, four part harmony. The song leader would stand at the front, announce the song number and everyone would take a book and find the song. The leader would then blow the key into a “pitch pipe” and sound the starting soprano note. The leaders were always men. They would start the song and keep time by directing with the right hand. One of our leaders used a “tuning fork,” a small device that when struck sounded the “a” note. From that “a” note he could determine the starting note and sound it out. The pitch pipe was a small round harmonica type device that had the complete scale. All you needed to do was to determine the song’s opening note, find it on the pitch pipe, blow that sound and start the song on that note. The hymnals we used had shaped notes and we learned the music that way.

The reason this was important to me was that some of the adults decided that since I was interested in music, maybe I would like to lead songs. I was no more than twelve at the time so it was a sort of novelty. None of the other churches had a child choosing and leading songs. I sometimes had difficulty announcing the song number because of my stammering speech problem, but I never had a problem singing or even starting the song. I did have an issue when I passed through puberty and my voice “changed.” For a while I kept starting songs in my falsetto. Somehow I learned to adjust after someone who was several years older than me pointed out that I should be using my natural voice to start the songs. From that time on, through my teen years, I carried a pitch pipe to church and was often asked to lead the singing in our church and the affiliated churches.

In the 1950s the Eshelman’s group outgrew the small, one-room school house and built a new church building nearby. The group changed the name to Salem Ridge Mennonite Church. Into the early 1960s, we still did not have a minister so the emphasis remained on the children. When you had joined the church, you participated in confession, communion and an ordinance called feet washing. These traditions were held a few times a year. A bishop and deacon would come and oversee those activities. First we would go into a small room in groups of ten or twelve and one by one say the words, “I have peace with God and man and I desire to take communion.” The men and women did not mix for these rituals. I guess if you felt that you were guilty of some sin, this was an opportunity to confess. Ironically, I do not recall anyone ever confessing. Then when everyone was back in the sanctuary, the bread and wine (we used non-alcoholic grape juice) was passed around. After communion, several buckets of warm water were brought in and the men washed each others feet. On the other side, women discreetly removed their hose and did the same. The water was just sort of symbolically splashed on and dried with a towel to follow the example Jesus taught at the ”last supper.” I remember my feet being tickled when being dried. There was also a tradition called the “holy kiss.” At our church this was only practiced by some of the older members but they would greet each other with a kiss on the lips. They would not do it outside of the church. I remember some of the older men kissing me after I joined the church and it was creepy. I tried to avoid them. If someone felt that they wanted to confess a sin there was the process of public confession and if there was a known sin that a member refused to confess and ask for forgiveness, that member could be excommunicated. I am not aware that this ever happened at our church but I do know that it happened, especially in the Washington County churches, under bishop Moses Horst.

The Maugansville School was two block from our house
The view of Brewer's house and garage from our driveway
  Chapter 3, 1952-1957