for Sept. 5, 2012

Vote no on casino measures

I have belonged to the grange for 69 years and we are an agricultural and community service based fraternal nonprofit organization.

I want you to know that the Springwater Grange (and any other local grange), Clackamas County Pomona Grange, Oregon State Grange and National Grange have no connection to that slick 10 page folder that we received in the mail yesterday.

Please vote no on ballot measure 82 and 83.

Wilma Guttridge, Springwater

Church grateful for community support

Aug. 25 was celebrated at the Clackamas Valley Baptist Church (CVBC) fellowship hall with a fundraiser dinner and silent auction.

Members of the congregation have united in a monumental task to raise enough funds to send Pastor Richard and Josie Burson and Pastor Paul and Kelly Parker on a once in a lifetime 13-day biblical tour of the holy lands that include Israel and Jordon.

Church members donated everything needed to feed more than 100 people as a fundraising effort to help raise the needed funds for the trip and expenses.

Church members served an all-you-can-eat dinner of Taco’s and Taco Salad with all of the fixings for the community of Estacada for $7 per plate. The response was fantastic.

Along with the all-you-can-eat dinner, members of the Estacada community and church members donated numerous auction items.

Church members raised more than $1,300 toward their trip on Saturday alone, which turned out to be a night of great fun and fellowship, friendly bidding and meeting new friends and family. Other church members have been having parking lot sales, garage sales and lunches to help in the effort.

Members of church have realized what an impact this trip will be on the spiritual life of their pastors and their wives.

A trip of this magnitude will change their lives forever and influence in a very positive way their ministries here in the Estacada area and abroad. The trip isn’t about sightseeing or going on a vacation, it’s about connecting with the very things in the Bible that they preach about week after week in a way that will pour out on the congregation they serve.

Organizers are still taking reservations for the Dec. 4-16 trip for anyone who would like to experience Israel in a way most people never get to. If interested, contact the church for more details.

Clackamas Valley Baptist Church wants to say “thank you” to the community or its support, and we are proud to be a part of this great community.

Josie Burson, administrative assistant, Clackamas Valley Baptist Church, Estacada

Community Center show kindness, generosity

When I was very small, my family lived in what you could call an average middle class neighborhood in Estacada.

The one exception was right across the street at the Wright’s house. The Wrights were — well — what you would call dirt poor,

Mr. Wright drove a school bus part time and did small jobs here and there. It surely wasn’t enough to support a household of two adults and three children.

Then there was Mrs. Wright, who did what she could to bring in a little money to support their needs. There was a little sign on a post outside their house that read simply, “ironing done”.

She would take in the neighbor’s ironing and for just a few cents each, she would iron, fold and return them. It netted her very little.

She was so poor that she couldn’t pay money to tithe at church, so she played the piano as a gift there. Although I was very young, I can still remember hearing her playing those old church hymns on the old piano that sat just inside the door of that old rundown house.

I remember her hurrying down the street in the evenings on foot to the church with Bible and sheet music in hand to play because she had no car to drive.

The other families’ kids in the neighborhood would get treats of candy and would sometimes very cruelly tease the Wright kids because they had none. Mrs. Wright witnessed this from time to time but never said anything.

Once in a while, she would get a few pennies ahead and would bake homemade soda crackers. Sometimes they were salted and sometimes she had no salt and so they were not.

Now don’t feel sorry for Mrs. Wright, because she had something else that most people back then and today don’t have, she had mastered the art of generosity.

While the neighbors kids were selfish with their candy, she was very generous with the crackers because as long as they lasted, any kid in the neighborhood that wanted one, got it with no strings attached.

Since those days I have rarely seen such acts of real kindness and generosity, and as time goes on, very unfortunately, I see less and less.

Last week, however, I got a pleasant surprise.

I got to see that generosity and kindness on a grand scale in action as the Estacada Community Center received a nice donation of an estate and proceeded to have an estate sale to liquidate the assets.

The volunteers worked for months to get the liquidation in order and although the estate was fairly substantial, it won’t be long before it is gone because of the enormous costs it takes to run that center.

Over the years, along with other services they have also provided, they have fed literally hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of people. Why, they have even fed some of their pets because the seniors will feed their pets before themselves. Much of this is even free of charge.

I visited their sale and got a very pleasant surprise because I couldn’t believe how kind and generous they were with their buyers. Basically, they let people pay pretty much whatever they wanted to for most everything.

Now, you have to remember that this center has run on a shoestring for as long as it has been around and many times it was facing closure because of lack of funds while still trying to keep the doors open and people fed.

Despite many signs at the sale asking people to be generous, many paid little and got lots. This still didn’t change the kind minds and attitudes of the volunteers.

When I gave the old guy $20 more than I owed, I thought he might pull my arm out of its socket because of his mighty handshake of appreciation.

I’m telling you folks, that what I saw that day was still another genuine community service and a real class act of kindness and generosity.

Mrs. Wright and Jack Kellendonk would be proud.

Mike Doolittle, Estacada

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