No. 797



First, allow me to set the stage. On Sunday, Sept. 3, 1939, at 11 o’clock in the morning, Great Britain declared war on Germany to enter World War II. France also declared war later that same day. This is the backdrop for a most interesting article a reader sent me titled “Richmond Golf Club – Temporary Rules – 1940.”
Most avid golfers know that Scotland is the birthplace of golf, and the Old Course at St. Andrews has more history than any other golf course in the world. Now, I am not sure where the Richmond Golf Club was or is located, probably in England, but the reason for the Temporary Rules was most interesting in view of the fact they were issued during a time of war. Even if you don’t play golf, this article will show you just how die-hard some golfers are.
Here are the rules: “1. Players are asked to collect bomb and shrapnel splinters to save these from causing damage to the mowing machines. 2. In competitions, during gunfire or while bombs are falling, players may take cover without penalty for ceasing play. 3. The positions of known delayed action bombs are marked by red flags at a reasonably, but not guaranteed, safe distance there from. 4. Shrapnel and/or bomb splinters on the fairways or in bunkers within a club’s length of a ball may be moved without penalty, and no penalty shall be incurred if a ball is thereby caused to move accidentally. 5. A ball moved by enemy action may be replaced or, if lost or destroyed, a ball may be dropped not nearer the hole without penalty. 6. A ball lying in a crater may be lifted and dropped but not nearer the hole, preserving the line to the hole, without penalty. 7. A player whose stroke is affected by the simultaneous explosion of a bomb may play another ball from the same place. Penalty is one stroke.”
After reading this list of rules, I would say this is definitely a case of where you would have to golf at your own risk. As I write these words, our local Lions Club members are making plans to host the 13th annual Jamie Bray Memorial Golf Classic. It has been my privilege for the past several years to be responsible for securing the hole sponsors and the players for our tournament. This is our club’s major fundraiser to help the blind and visually impaired. While I am not very good, I love to play golf because it’s a great fellowship game and a way to be outside and enjoy the beautiful world that God has created for us. The guys I play with are always involved in a lot of good-natured kidding. We all moan when one makes a poor shot, and cheer when one of us makes a good one.
This past week I learned something exciting from our tournament chairman, Marty Faggetti. He and seven of his fellow golfers are going to Scotland this summer and will play the Old Course at St. Andrews and several others. They will have a wonderful time, and it will be the trip of a lifetime for each of them.
Now, there is another aspect of what I have been sharing, other than golfing. This is the fact that there are thousands of golf tournaments held all over the nation each year, with the proceeds going to help some worthy cause. There is really no reason why we should not have fun and help others at the same time. Personally, I feel good about the fact that my time, efforts and resources are going to help the blind and the less fortunate. Hope you share that same spirit. We are indeed our brother’s keeper.
(EDITOR'S NOTE: Jim Davidson is a public speaker and syndicated columnist. You may contact him at 2 Bentley Drive, Conway, AR 72034. To begin a bookcase literacy project visit You won’t go wrong helping a needy child.)