Sunday, December 25, 2011


I will begin with a quick review. You may also do a site search on this blog for "GERMFASK" and all previous chapters will appear.

Synopsis: GERMFASK, is the name of a tiny, isolated village in the eastern end of Michigan's Upper Peninsula. The major town business is the Jolly Inn, which is a restaurant and inn with two rooms for let. The proprietors are Arnie and his wife Sharon, transplants from Chicago.

 In this restaurant an impromptu ecumenical discussion group formed when the local Catholic priest, Father Randy, and Mike Monroe, the pastor of Manistique Community Church, bonded over a dying perisher. Later two additional pastors had joined the group including David Smith, a Church of God minister and Gregory Landis, a retired Methodist minster from Grand Rapids. The men met each Wednesday morning over cups of coffee and Sharon's famous omelets. They didn't meet to discuss theological issues. To do so, they knew would quickly drive them apart. Instead they met just to be friends, friends who share a common experience of leading (or had led in the case of Rev. Landis) congregations.

One Monday morning a new, odd stranger (who went by the name Tom Hans) came into the restaurant. Not only was his face new, but he seemed strange in many other ways . . . in both behavior and looks. He was tall and very thin.  Sharon was totally engulfed in curiosity about the man. When he started asking theological questions, Sharon invited him to be part of the Wednesday morning discussion group.

The traditional members were somewhat hesitant to allow the stranger to join them . . . at least they didn't share Sharon's enthusiasm. The main reason that the breakfast was at time of peace for the me and trying to answer someone's theological questions they knew would dig up some controversy.

Mr. Hans did join the group. While the usual members expressed great curiosity about him, Mr. Hans tired to redirect the attention to his own questions. Finally, at an impasse, Mr. Hans revealed that he was from another planet. He was a descendant of a lost tribe from Babel.  His tribe was made up of the engineers of the tower, so when God dispersed them, as Tom's story goes, he sent the actual tower designers to a different planet, Teyvat (meaning ark in old Hebrew). Tom's people are called Hanserians, meaning the engineer tribe.

While the Hanserians had their traditional history, and knew their origins well, they didn't have scriptures to teach them specifics of human history and God's interactions with people. They were a far more advanced civilization than earthlings. They based their great advancement on the fact that they had learned to rightly divide reason and emotions to their proper places . . . decisions come from reason, emotions are for personal enjoyment.  Humans, on the other, make most of their decisions from emotions.  In their advancement, Hanserians figured out how to travel long distances and including visiting earth.

Their tribal history told them that they were from earth and that is where they would find the answers to their destiny.  For this reason, they had studied earth, from afar, for decades.  Tom Hans was one of the "spies" sent to study humans on a more personal level and to learn what they know of God and His Gospel.

Debra, a good friend of Father Randy and a Presbyterian pastor from the town of Munising.  Because she too became intriged with the stranger, she, by Father Randy's invitation, drove the 100 mile round trip to join the Wednesday morning round table discussions.

By the time Part I ended, most of the people were still skeptical of Tom Hans.  Some thought he was crazy, a con man or someone with a wild imagination.  However, because of Tom's uncanny ability to read people, Greg was starting to believe him.

It was the beginning of August and several of the group's members were taking trips so they adjourned until after Labor Day.  It is now September 7th and the group is being reunited.


kg said...

Looking forward to reading more of Germfask!

jmj said...

Oh, thanks. I hope someone is. I'm finishing up the first, new one.

Anna A said...

Thank you for returning to Germfask.

My reaction is a simple WOW.

Anonymous said...

yess! I loved those stories. gonna read the new epidodes now...

(something in them reminded me of the SF books of Ursula Le guin. Are you influenced by that type of books?)