Tall Oaks Lodge at CQH
A groundbreaking ceremony was held Sunday evening, October 2nd at Camp Quaker Heights for the new lodge that will soon be a reality. Tall Oaks Lodge will be an all-season facility with a main floor and walk-in basement. It will have 9 bedrooms, all with private baths, a full kitchen as well as large rooms for gatherings and dining. The toilet facilities for the RV area will be included in the basement configuration. Contracts have been signed with Sunrise Homes of Iowa Falls to deliver the top floor by mid-December. The basement excavation will begin next week and the basement should be poured by mid-October.
Payment for the building will be expected upon delivery. Numerous pledges have been given for the building, and other donations would be welcome. Send your gifts to IAYM, designated for the Tall Oaks Lodge at CQH. This new lodge will be used for many new ministry opportunities. Can you be a part of it?
Fall Harvest Party
The Christian Education Committee will be sponsoring a Fall Harvest Party at the church on Sunday, October 30, 2005, from 3:00-5:00 p.m. This will replace the annual fall skating party.
Children and adults alike are invited to attend and take part in a number of activities that are being planned: hayrides, carnival games in the fellowship hall and outside as well, a Great Pumpkin Hunt and refreshments. Adults, youth and children are invited to wear costumes based on the theme, “God’s Creatures Big and Small.” Watch for further details that will be posted soon around the church.
Help Fill the Box for the HOC Supply Closet
Items currently needed most: Over the Counter Medicines for Children and Adults; Laundry Detergent; Toilet Paper; Baby and Toddler sized Diapers. You can bring these to the church anytime during the month of October.
Harvest Time is Here!
One of the things I have definitely noticed around Bangor is that harvest time is a very busy time for a lot of people. There is a sense of urgency in the air and a sense of community like I’ve never experienced before. It seems that everyone is working towards a common goal and if someone has a need, then others are right there to help. That type of community togetherness is something to be cherished.
A verse of scripture that has taken on a slightly different meaning to me since being here at Bangor is Matthew 9:37-38, “He said to his disciples, ‘the harvest is so great, but the workers are so few. So pray to the Lord who is in charge of the harvest; ask him to send out more workers for his fields’” (NLT). Here is the contrast between this verse and what I see in the physical harvest going on all around us. I see vast fields of beans and corn being harvested by only a handful of people at a time, which is fine because after all they are only beans and corn, right? Because of the modernization of farming over especially the last sixty or so years with the introduction of the self-propelled combine, among many other advances in farming and farm machinery, the amount of labor hours necessary to produce the same amount of output has decreased. This in turn has enabled farmers to plant more and harvest more putting those gained labor hours to productive use increasing their overall output. If you wanted to look back even further to 1837 when the threshing machine was first introduced, farmers back then thought they were getting a big leg up on the game. I did a little research and did you know that in 1850 it took 75-90 labor hours to produce 100 bushels of corn out of 2 ½ acres of land. Out of that same 2 ½ acres of land in 1930 you could produce 100 bushels of corn with just 15-20 labor hours. But in 1987, 100 bushels of corn was able to be yielded out of only 1-1/8 acres of land in just 2 ¾ labor hours. I got this information from the USDA on the Internet and it just goes to show you how much farming has advanced over the last 150 years. How many bushels are you getting per acre this year?
All of this modernizing is fine for the harvest going on in the fields all around us right now, but what about the Spiritual Harvest that is not just ready now, but all year long? Are we also de-personalizing through the modernization of the church? It takes inter-personal contact to produce the Harvest Jesus is talking about. So the contrast I was talking about earlier really is no contrast at all. There are few workers in the fields and we need to pray to the Lord of the Harvest so that He would send workers to those fields. The irony is that just as Jesus presented this to His disciples with the implication that the ones they were praying for the Father to send was actually them, we too are praying that God would send us into His fields to reap the Harvest that is all around us. We live in an era of de-personalization with e-mail, instant messaging, text messaging and cell phones all of which were thought to be ways of keeping us interconnected, but instead they have become ways by which we are actually given excuses not to meet face to face.
Remember that sense of urgency and sense of community I mentioned earlier, I really believe we need to incorporate that into the way we reach out to those in our communities who need to know Jesus. We all need to develop inter-personal relationships with people other than just our Christian brothers and sisters.
We all need to work toward that common goal and if someone has a need, we need to be there for them and the biggest need anyone could ever have is the need for Jesus’ saving grace. It’s going to require a lot of labor and most likely will not produce a great yield, but I can assure you this, you will love it once you’ve ventured out into the field with Jesus!
Thank you all for a great weekend! My family and I really enjoyed the “Fear Factor” theme and we are thankful for all the time and hard work that went into the weekend. We look forward to “Family Camp” every year and are already excited about next year. May God bless you all!
-T.J., Mari, Jake, Bekah, Emma and Zach Stanfield
P.S. Go, Hawkeyes!
You have continued to bless us in many ways and we can never be thankful enough for how God provides. Thank you for peppers, canning jars, eggs and babysitting to name just a few. Thank you for your prayers and concern for us and our loved one. Pastor Dean, Amy, Emily and Hannah.
Nancy and I want to thank each of you and your churches for your loyal support to the Friends Disaster Service efforts that were put forth over the last few weeks. Paul Albritton and I just returned home Wednesday night from Farmerville, Louisiana. We had every nook and cranny of the FDS trailer packed with the many items that the IYM churches provided for
the Katrina evacuees. There was not an empty place left in the trailer for anything. The people in the shelter in Farmerville, where we took the supplies, were overjoyed with the items we brought. We were also able to eat lunch and spend some time talking with some of the evacuees who have moved from Southern Louisiana to the Farmerville area. They would all like to go back home but realize there is very little, if anything, for them to go back to.
We ask that you keep the Katrina evacuees in your prayers as they search
for new homes and jobs. Many of the people we talked with have good jobs in Southern Louisiana and are eager to get back to them; however, many of the employers have put things on hold until they see what the future has in store for the areas hit by Katrina.
God Bless! Dan & Nancy Ritchie
Fall is fast approaching, and Thanksgiving will soon be here. The BLFC Missions committee has met and decided on the Thank Offering recipients and the Thank Offering Service will be held the Sunday before Thanksgiving, Nov. 20, with a potluck meal afterwards. The offering will be divided equally among the following. Lugulu Hospital in Kenya -- Friends Disaster Service -- Camp Scholarships for our kids -- BLFC General Fund. As in the past you may designate to other mission projects if you wish.
If you remember, Dr. David Lugaria was at BLFC earlier this year. He is the Surgeon at the Lugulu Hospital in Kenya. The hospital is in arrears in paying their staff salaries. This is partly due to the hospital’s income coming from some child and community preventative health programs, which the Kenyan Government says the hospital can now provide freely as a consequence of new aid programs. The other factor has been government increases in salaries for health professionals, which has impacted the private hospitals. The standard of care at private hospitals, such as Lugulu that are mindful of the poor, is substantially higher than Government hospitals where care and concern can be minimal or non-existent. The worst cases, which have been dismissed by government hospitals with unsolved problems, end up at Lugulu and other private hospitals. These are often the most expensive to treat -- either through surgery, good nursing and/or pharmaceuticals and yet are presented often by the poorest of people. Lugulu also has Adopt-a- Bed and Adopt-a-Patient programs, which we have participated in the past. We are promised the money will be properly spent and controlled.
Friends Disaster Service has helped in all kinds of disasters all over the country. Now they are helping in the South with the after-effects of Hurricane Katrina. We feel that they need our support at this time. Dean and Freeda Johnson, directors of the FDS, report that Freeda has had surgery and is at home recovering. They have received a considerable amount of money for Katrina. FDS has sent 5 trucks and semis full of food, water and emergency supplies. On October 6th they start to rebuild. Jim and
Sierra Secaur are there working and plan to stay two months. Freeda thanks everyone for all for the prayers for her health and the work of the FDS. There is much more work to be done.
Camp Scholarships --We want to help send our local young people to camp next summer.
General Fund -- To help keep our Church General Fund in the black.
-BLFC Missions Committee
Daylight Savings Time Ends Oct. 30th - Set your clocks back one hour!
On October 16, we will prepare and serve a lunch to the Silver Belles. Then on the 30th, we’ll be learning about the church committees and make care boxes for our college students. (A signup sheet will be passed around so all can help with donations for the college boxes. We could also use a few more shoeboxes.) All children age 4 through grade 5 are welcome to participate. See Margaret with any questions.
Guests are always welcome to join the ladies of Liberty USFW as they meet monthly. In October the ladies will meet at Pam Norman’s home on Wednesday, October 12th at 7:00 p.m.
Everyone is welcome to join the Bangor USFW at 1:30 on October 18 to hear Kelly Kellum, pastor at College Ave. Friends in Oskaloosa, share a workshop he gave at the FUM Triennial. This will take place in the church fellowship hall beginning with refreshments. The program, Rejoice Africa, uses video footage taken by his grandfather while serving as a Friends missionary in Kenya, between 1928-1955. The video tells the story of his grandparents lives and highlights the history of Friends missions in Kenya. There will be a short business meeting for Bangor ladies following the presentation.
Library Ledge Family Fitness
How fit is your family? Not physically, but emotionally and spiritually? If you are in need of improvement, the library has materials to help you tone your parenting muscles. Here are just a few examples:
In 3 Steps to a Strong Family, the authors provide a 3-step program that can make family life happier, less stressful and more rewarding. Full of commonsense ideas and practical advice, it will give you tools to create family traditions and reinforce your family’s goals.
Maxine Hancock’s Creative, Confident Children, offers comfort for raising children in our times. She shows us how to have confidence as a parent, reminding us that since the beginning of time, parenting has been done by amateurs. She discusses discipline, TV, sex education, character development and building a spiritual foundation. Check out the library ledge --- you’ll find humor, challenge and encouragement there.
HOC Keystone Fund
The House of Compassion in Marshalltown has established an endowment fund, the Keystone Fund, to provide a long-term base of financial support for the HOC. Only income generated from investments will be disbursed. This means any gift you give to the fund will live forever, helping those in need. Please consider joining the 43 local churches that provide support of money and volunteers in helping keep Marshalltown a safe and caring community. For further information check out the flyer on the bulletin board at the church.
September HOC Report
On September 29, 24 BLFC members were involved in purchasing, preparing, serving and clean up for 69 guests. Our menu was creamed chicken on mashed potatoes, green means and bacon, zucchini and onions, tomatoes, corn bread and honey, cranberry sauce or mixed fruit, various cakes and bars, milk, Kool-Aid and coffee. All the food was enjoyed and none was leftover.
Neil reported a quiet night with 7 middle age and younger men. Two were spending their last night there as they had found employment and were moving on. One man had been ill and in the hospital and had not much to his name. The others were sharing what they had with him -- a pair of
socks, an extra shirt, etc.
Mark your calendars for our October responsibility on the 27th. We've also been asked to help another church serve their meal on Wednesday the 26th. Contact Margaret to sign up for either night. Thanks to everyone for their service.
Interfaith Alliance of Iowa
The Interfaith Alliance of Iowa has placed in Iowa around 100 people who have lost homes and jobs following Hurricane Katrina. If anyone is truly interested in hosting someone you may contact the Alliance at 515-279-8715. They have pretty specific guidelines and anyone wanting to pursue this would have to sign up and wait to see if any families coming to Iowa specifically asked for your location. They are looking primarily at Des Moines first. You would need to provide them with their own housing, clothing, food and transportation in the beginning. These people coming in have to sign up with all the proper agencies so they can receive help, as they are qualified.