It wasn’t stormy, but it was dark. They met at a local church. The youth group was going to a haunted house after the dinner. He was a junior at Southwest Baptist College in Bolivar. She was a sophomore at Central High School in Springfield. They had met once before when both were dating others. They were available and looking for someone now.
His standard practice of welcoming guests to church lead to more. He found a reason to be close to her and their mutual friends that she had come with. Holding hands in the line as they waited outside the house being used for Halloween by the Jaycess was not difficult. The hard part was saying goodbye at the end of the night.
Her phone number was easy to get. The problem was no one answered when he called. Asking about her at church on Sunday he found that she had been sick and was in the hospital. He and the pastor went to see her, but she had been released. After a week of trying to see her again, they finally made contact. They haven’t gotten tired of each other yet.
The summer after they started dating he went to Pennsylvania as a summer missionary and their love was tested by ten weeks apart. The following summer they were married and for several years they would visit a haunted house around Halloween to celebrate that first encounter.
Halloween is a time of fun, fright and fantasy. That night thirty-nine years ago there was fun. The only fright served to drive her into his arms and that was a fantasy for him. This year as always, he thanks God that the fantasy is still true.