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Sunday, March 14, 2010

Real life stories: The Ghost Buggy

One Summer day in the school holidays of 1981, I was seated on the cracked and faded linoleum floor of my Nan’s house in North Parramatta (For our international readers, the home of the worlds greatest Rugby League Club J ), drinking a cup of tea and soaking up every word of the conversation between Nan and her older sister Elsie.

Elsie, or Dee Dee as we called her, was born in 1899. Her family were descendants of recent Irish immigrants who had settled in the Hawkesbury area and then Dubbo, in north western NSW. I had heard conversations about the past many times, always involving natural subjects like what school was like in the early 1900’s, working on the land, not having television or electrical appliances, kids games and recreation – all the usual stuff old people reminisce about.

I started to ask them if they believed in ghosts, and shared a story about something strange I had seen in my room in 1978 at a rented house on Windsor Street at Richmond (see archive for full story). I was describing what I had seen and they were taking me about a quarter seriously but I could tell they thought it was a tall tale by their gentle condescension.

Dee Dee then shared with me a tale that I have never forgotten.

“One day my sisters and I were walking home from school in Dubbo and we saw a man in a horse and buggy coming…”

“What’s a horse and buggy”? I interjected.

“..A buggy is a small carriage with two wheels that goes behind a horse, like the harnesses you see at the horse trotting, it just holds one or two people.

The buggy was coming toward us a way off and as it was a narrow road when it got within ¼ of a mile of us we moved over to the side of the track.

The man was dressed in normal clothes but he wasn’t taking any notice of us. Then all of a sudden, the horse bolted and they took off toward a fence. But they went straight through the fence, then continued into the paddock next to the road, then they both disappeared while we were watching.”

“So they didn’t get caught on the fence”?

“No, they went through the fence like it wasn’t even there. We just watched in shock and then 100 feet into the paddock it was gone, the man, the horse and the buggy disappeared in front of us, into thin air”.

“Whooaaaaa. Did you tell your parents”?

“We all ran home screaming and told mum, who was home and Dad when he got back from work. They just shrugged it off, they had more important things to do and think about”.

(Fair enough when you have ten kids I guess).

I didn’t hear another story like that in terms of a real life situation until my future wife and her parents told me the story of what she had been seeing in her house at Bowen Mountain NSW – convicts and ancient people walking through the house at night time (See Churinga Stone story in the archive).

The thing that blows me away is this – we are just one family and yet when I probed or listened I found out that we have so many stories about the supernatural that wouldn’t have come out if we hadn’t created a safe environment to discuss it or raised the subject. I have my own stories and almost every grandparent in our family has one’s they had experienced or personally heard about that weren’t debunked as urban myths. The reason that we have so many real life stories on our page is because my nature is to ask people about this subject and so many people – from my senior Pastor to my next door neighbour – have stories about the supernatural that cannot be written off easily.

So from a quantitative perspective, numerically speaking the supernatural is actually a very natural and regular occurrence.

A well respected Pastor from Ireland named Ken Symington who has years of experience in the supernatural and deliverance visited Australia last year and told the attendee’s at a conference about his view on the subject of 'ghosts'.

His view was that many hauntings appear to be what can best be described as 'residual'. That means that they are not actually the spirits of the deceased in the sense we may understand, but they appear to be almost like a recording of an incident, which in his experience was almost always due to a traumatic event. He used the example of a legion of Roman soldiers who march through a house in the UK every Sunday at 3pm, who show no sign of awareness of anything around them.

He said no amount of deliverance prayer will remove them, but what seems to be effective is taking communion in the house with clergy and the family together, and then asking the Lord to send angels to remove the haunting and traces of the event.

We have a couple of cases of 'residual haunts' on the books, one only minutes from home, so in the near future we will be trying this technique. We’ll keep you posted about how it goes when we finally get to them.

Pastor Baz.

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