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Prayers as Heard By Children

pray childFrom San Francisco: When I was a child, I learned this prayer as "Our Father, who are in Heaven, Howard be thy name." I always thought that was God's real name.

Groton, Mass: My mother spent her early childhood saying, "Hail Mary, full of grapes."

Missoula, Mont: My son, who is in nursery school, said, "Our Father, who art in Heaven, how didja know my name?"

Uniontown, Ohio: I remember thinking this prayer was "Give us this day our jelly bread."

Covina, Calif: I recall reading something years ago about the Pledge of Allegiance. Some child thought it began, "I led the pigeons to the flag."

Cleveland, Ohio: When I was little, I often wondered who Richard Stands was. You know: "I pledge allegiance to the flag . . . and to the republic for Richard Stands."

Schenectady, N.Y.: I once knew a child whose favorite Sunday school song was "Gladly, the Cross-Eyed Bear."

Tampa, Fla: When my husband was 6 years old, he thought a certain prayer was "He suffered under a bunch of violets." The real words were "under Pontius Pilate," but at that age, he didn't know better. To this day, we still snicker in church whenever that prayer is read.

Lake Forest Park, Wash: When I was a little girl, we sang a song in Sunday school about Noah. Part of the chorus was "And the rains came down, and the floods came up." We lived next door to a couple of charming little girls who always sang this song while playing in their garden. Their words were, "And the rains came down, and the spuds came up."

Grand Junction, Colo: When I was younger, I believed the line was "Lead a snot into temptation." I thought I was praying for my little sister to get into trouble.

Oak Harbor, Wash: When my older brother was very young, he always walked up to the church altar with my mother when she took communion. On one occasion, he tugged at her arm and asked, "What does the priest say when he gives you the bread?" Mom whispered something in his ear. Imagine his shock many years later when he learned that the priest doesn't say, "Be quiet until you get to your seat."

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