It is reported that a church in The Hague has been running a continuous service for thirty-eight days (so far) to prevent the arrest and deportation of an Armenian family; an old Dutch law forbids the police from entering a church while a religious service is in progress.

Religious people like to go,
To church on Sundays where they know,
There’ll be a service, they can pray,
And when it’s done they come away.

The service lasts an hour, not two,
And longer ones are rather few;
Not even when the King is crowned,
Do people longer stick around,
Though that day, even if you tried,
You likely wouldn’t get inside.

But back to Sundays, what if they,
Did hymns and prayers throughout the day,
And then to give you such a fright,
They carried on throughout the night?

And then the next days, three and four,
With cops now lined up by the door,
You’d wonder why these Dutch police,
Seemed to prevent people’s release.

More days pass by, it’s not a joke,
If you’d known you’d have brought a cloak;
And then somebody there explains
The non-stop preaching and refrains,
Will carry on and woe betide,
The police if they should come inside.

For there’s a law, made long ago,
Which says policemen cannot go,
Into a church while people pray,
No matter they might stay all day.

And that’s what’s happening right now,
Parishioners have made a vow,
To sing and pray for all they’re worth,
So five folk from elsewhere on earth,
Can’t be arrested then expelled,
From Holland where they long have dwelled.

So that’s their plan, we wish them luck,
Hope preachers don’t for words get stuck,
The police might have a while to wait –
It’s only now day thirty-eight.

How will it end? We can but guess.
I hope they’re not in much distress;
They might run out of prayers and song,
The Bible, though, is pretty long!