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22. CHAPTER XXII. SERMONS AND WOODBOXES (continued)
For a moment there was no answer; then the minister looked up with a start.
"What? Oh!--yes, it is a very nice day."
"And 'tisn't cold at all, either, even if 'tis October," observed Pollyanna, still more hopefully. "Mr. Pendleton had a fire, but he said he didn't need it. It was just to look at. I like to look at fires, don't you?"
There was no reply this time, though Pollyanna waited patiently, before she tried again--by a new route.
"Do You like being a minister?"
The Rev. Paul Ford looked up now, very quickly.
"Do I like--Why, what an odd question! Why do you ask that, my dear?"
"Nothing--only the way you looked. It made me think of my father. He used to look like that--sometimes."
"Did he?" The minister's voice was polite, but his eyes had gone back to the dried leaf on the ground.
"Yes, and I used to ask him just as I did you if he was glad he was a minister."
The man under the tree smiled a little sadly.
"Well--what did he say?"
"Oh, he always said he was, of course, but 'most always he said, too, that he wouldn't STAY a minister a minute if 'twasn't for the rejoicing texts."
"The--WHAT?" The Rev. Paul Ford's eyes left the leaf and gazed wonderingly into Pollyanna's merry little face.
"Well, that's what father used to call 'em," she laughed. "Of course the Bible didn't name 'em that. But it's all those that begin 'Be glad in the Lord,' or 'Rejoice greatly,' or 'Shout for joy,' and all that, you know--such a lot of 'em. Once, when father felt specially bad, he counted 'em. There were eight hundred of 'em."
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