I did the midweek communion this morning at the small church in St Mawes. On the door of the church is a new notice...It reads. "The swallows here have squatters rights in this porch but not in the church, Please keep the door closed.! "
The porch is already knee deep in gunge and it will get worse as the babies hatch and fly.
If they get into the church proper they do a great deal of damage unless plastic sheets are put over altar clothes and cushions etc.
One summer I was doing a wedding in the small church, and christening their baby afterwards....the door had been left open and on the morning of the wedding it was definitely unsanitary. I feared both for the wedding dress and the baby .
A small gang of women appeared, rolled up their sleeves and got to work.
One cheerful lady said
"Jean, if you tell my husband I can use a mop I might have to kill you!"
With great good will the church was cleaned and made ready for the wedding. The flowers were arranged
beautifully and all was well.
Suddenly a flight of swallows appeared . They had got in through a small gap where the bell rope was hanging.
During the service they skimmed up and down the nave at top speed and were really very beautiful....
Apprehensive faces followed their progress but we had the neat and tidy version ....nothing untoward spoiled the big day and since then the small gap has been filled and so far the swallows have been happy with the porch!
We are all prepared to step over the droppings in the porch. There is no question of eviction.....they are after God's creatures and probably nearer to Him than us humans!