I had a chance to see Garrison Keillor do his great Prairie Home Companion show Saturday at Ravinia in Highland Park outside of Chicago.
The show went on despite end-of-the-world storms that drenched those in the outdoor seating. Luckily for me, I was under the pavilion.
Keillor, 71, still has his fastball. He played to the Chicago audience by giving his version of why the Cubs haven’t won the World Series since 1908. It makes about as much sense as anything else.
If you want to listen to the audio, the Cubs segment occurs at the 1:11 mark of the show.
It’s the 100th anniversary of Wrigley Field in Chicago, which was built in 1914 on the site of the old Chicago Lutheran Theological Seminary. And right there is the key to the story of the Chicago Cubs. This team is the living embodiment of Lutheran theology, which if I need remind you is not about winning. It’s not about being No. 1. It is about taking the back seat and being of service to others.
The Cubs have been of service to so many other teams. They have pulled other teams out of losing streaks. Batters who were in painful slumps have recovered their confidence against the Cubs.
It’s a good Lutheran team you’ve got there on the North Side of Chicago.
Keillor then honored the Cubs with a song.
We can accept dropped flyballs, wild pitches and flubs,
Within these sacred ivy walls, we commune with the Chicago Cubs.
The race is not always to the swift, so blessed are the meek.
We thank the Lord for any gift, and always turn the other cheek.
Trying to discern the way, theologians got invites.
For years, we only played by day, and then reluctantly put on the lights.
We do not ask to come in first; We never will be gifted.
We accept that we are cursed, and prayer has failed to lift it.
We live by faith and we give thanks, and know someday in heaven,
We’ll play the Series with the Yanks, and win the best of seven.