Yesterday the choirlet went to sing at a church service being held by the Housing Authority in a nearby town. The service was held in what must be the recreation center of a low-income housing development; there was a pool table, a TV and VCR, and a dozen pool cues by the piano.

The piano sounded like a toy, but out of tune. There was a stack of tattered hymnals with the name of another church on the covers — donated cast offs, obviously. People sat in folding chairs, and the eight of us crowded around the preacher’s microphone to sing. The preacher stumbled through his sermon, which had interesting moments but clearly was an amateur affair.

I live in the Bible Belt, and there are churches on every corner. If it gets crowded in a church, the people immediately build another building, so there is always plenty of space. Church is free, and everyone is welcome. I sat through the service wondering why this group couldn’t just walk over to some nearby church where they could worship in comfort, with proper music and a chance of a well-prepared sermon.

The choirlet finished up with “God Will Take Care of You,” and it seemed like a horrible thing to sing. A young man with a baby in the front row was waiting, we were told, for an open bed at the jail so he could go serve his sentence for a crime committed when he was distraught over the death of another of his children. A woman at the back was incoherently fighting over the prize for bringing the largest number of guests. Many had obvious health issues and few seemed to be following what was going on very well. And we nicely-dressed ladies came in and sang to them that God would take care of them and left.

Seemed kind of heartless. Like, “God will take of you. We won’t.”

Not that I have any ideas about how to take care of them. I guess the Housing Authority does that. It just seemed unfortunate that, in the hour of the week when absolutely everyone has the option of being in a comfortable place with a good piano, these people weren’t.