Selma Rashford Grindley, the Matron of Miriam house, died on the 31st of July. She was cremated on the 1st of August. Her ashes would be interred on her father’s grave on the 5th of August.
Her brother, Don, arrived on the 3rd of August, caught a cab, and moved into Miriam House midday on Friday.
Don used the phone at Miriam House to call Joe, Selma’s son. Seeing Odette, the helper, he told her to make his a pot of tea, then made himself comfortable, moving the television from the room where his sister died to the room where the night nurse would stay.
Miriam House had been given to the Church by the Alexander family, and named after the oldest surviving member of that family, who was its first occupant. Originally, it had been a kind of old age home for members. It was registered as such.
Selma’s father had been a member, Selma became a member. Don, although dragged there by his father as a child, had left town as soon as able, and had nothing to do with the Church as did Joe, Selma’s son.
The idea to turn it into a Dormitory for female ‘students’ was adopted two decades ago so as to make money for the Church.
A number of rooms were built with a bathroom between them, to stuff in as many ‘students’ as possible.
To maintain the myth it was a charity, a ‘Matron’ was appointed who lived in the original house.