Story: Sister, the scourge of parochial schools everywhere, is back. She welcomes us into her classroom, where “JMJ” (as in Jesus, Mary and Joseph) in cursive is strategically positioned at the top of the nun’s and teacher’s blackboard.
She also has a bulletin board with photos of Presidents Washington, Lincoln, Kennedy and Trump as well as a photo of the Reverend Martin Luther King Jr. The photo of the 45th President stands eerily juxtaposed with the others, like many of us remember it. distant childhood. Sister also has a table full of Christmas presents that she says she will give to “students” who answer the questions correctly.
You better know How? ‘Or’ What answer, however, as much as What. You must speak complete sentences and start your comment with “Sister”, as in “Sister, my name is (full name only) and Santa Claus is based on St. Nicholas”. Your reward could be a holy card or a paddleball, depending on Sister’s whim.
As it is the holiday season, Sister Paul’s piano assistant leads the class in several upbeat Christmas songs before Sister arrives. When she hears us sing long live the wind, however, she advises us to change the lyrics to “Oh, what fun riding with baby Jesus in the sleigh,” because it’s his birthday, after all.
If you’re not on your best behavior, you could be hit with a demerit or even put in the corner, facing the wall if you’re particularly insubordinate. Sister then tells us that we are going to re-enact the Nativity (the birth of Jesus) and in doing so solve the millennial mystery of “what happened to the gold of the Magi?”