Summers during the 1940's, members of the United Armenian Brethren Church of Watertown, Massachusetts, would often head up to Rumney, New Hampshire, to gather with folks from area evangelical churches for a week in the country around a lake (similar to the camp meetings in Oak Bluffs on Martha's Vineyard), a week of attending religious services every morning, every afternoon, and every evening.
One evening, while the Rumney, N.H., evangelist was preaching on Satan, sitting in the congregation was Rev. Vartan Bilezikian, well known pastor of the United Armenian Brethren Church of Watertown, Massachusetts, reverently listening to the sermon. 8 year old cousin David, Rev. Vartan's great nephew, was also in attendance.
As David tells it, one afternoon during a particularly energetic church service, the folks in the congregation were distracted from what the (very forceful) evangelist was preaching; rather, they started turning their backs on the preacher, looking around and staring at the antics of a black cat that had walked into the house of worship and was strutting down the center aisle . . . right towards Uncle Vartan. The preacher started railing: "The devil has sent that black cat to distract you, my congregation of believers, to prevent you from hearing the Word of God." The little black cat, lonely for Uncle Vartan's attention, sidled up to him and started rubbing against Uncle Vartan's ankles; the very same Uncle Vartan, owner of the cat, tried to shoo it away without other folks in the congregation noticing. . . as the evangelist continued on the new topic of the day: The devil has sent that black cat to prevent you from hearing the Word of God! Get thee behind us, Satan! the evangelist preached quoting Jesus, as Uncle Vartan vainly attempted, with as much subtlety as he could muster, to shoo his cat away.