It seems a man in Topeka, Kansas, decided to write a book about churches around the country. He started by flying to San Francisco, and started working east from there. He went to a very large church and began taking photographs, etc. He spots a golden telephone on a wall and is intrigued with a sign which reads "$10,000 a minute." Seeking out the pastor, he asks about the phone and the sign. The pastor answers that this golden phone is, in fact, a direct line to Heaven and if he pays the price he can talk directly to God. He thanks the pastor and continues on his way.
As he continues to visit churches in Seattle, Boise, Minneapolis, Chicago, Milwaukee, New York, Atlanta, and on around the United States, he finds more phones, with the same sign, and the same answer from each pastor.
Finally, he arrives in Maine. Upon entering a church in Portland, lo and behold, he sees the usual golden telephone. But THIS time, the sign reads: "Calls: 25 cents." Fascinated, he requests to talk to the pastor. "Reverend, I have been in cities all across the country and in each church I found this golden telephone, and have been told it is a direct line to Heaven and that I could talk to God, but, in the other churches the cost was $10,000 a minute. Your sign reads 25 cents a call. Why?"
The pastor, smiling benignly, replies, "Oh, my son, that's very easy to explain. You see, you're now in Maine and, of course, it's a local call from here!"via eMail, Wed, 30 Aug 2000 18:00:27 EDT