Friday, December 25, 2009

Sisters Sharing on Christmas Morning

Sorry for the duplication on FB.

Christmas Oyster Stew for the Crew

1/4 c dried chopped onions
2 Tbs minced dried garlic
2 Tbs Mesquite flour

Put dry ingredients in bottom of stock pot, and brown on low heat until the Mesquite flour starts to stick.

Scrape and add 2 sticks of butter.

Let the butter melt, add 2 Tbs chopped Celery leaves.

Simmer for a short bit on low heat.

Add 2 Tbs Tabasco

Pour 1 Gal of milk on top.

Add a bit of chicken bouillon.

Toss in a little left over mashed potato or dehydrated potato buds or left-over rice for some body.

Bring it up to steaming.

Add the oysters and oyster juice.

Add a bit of salt to taste at this point.

Warm just a little longer and serve.

Fresh ground black pepper and Parmesan are great on top.

Some Music

Click the play button if you want to listen

It's on the top left.

Christmas Music by Magnatune Compilation

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Christmas Catechizations

Last Sunday Nazareth had it's Christmas Catechization, I took Monday off, did writing on Tuesday, made several phone calls. We've got sick kids, and Mary and I are a bit under the weather.

Wednesday more office work with Wed School. Thursday more writing to get ready for the Christmas blitz.

We've got Fred S's baptism scheduled for Dec 27th, and Nikolena H's baptismal affirmation scheduled for Jan 10th. Ellie and Eli's affirmation is scheduled too, but I just can't remember which Sunday tonight as I'm writing this.

Friday, among other writing tasks, I took a bit of time to make an arrow out of Cattail. I broke my bow and the arrow. The bow break isn't serious. I can repair that. But, grrr.

I need to make knock tips for the bow to avoid splitting between the grain. I should have done that earlier. Sorry, Quinten, you won't be able to use it next week.

Saturday, Christmas Catechization at Mt. Olive. The kids did great. We had nice visiting time after the service.

Two shut in visits. Howard F. was doing much better. He's getting stronger and is able to eat more food and more regularly. It still has to be the right texture for his throat muscles. Please keep him in your prayers.

Kevin wasn't home! He was feeling well enough to go on a visit of his own. I talked to his wife, Kim, for a little while and set up a visit for Monday morning. Please continue to keep Kevin in your prayers.

Got back to Oak Park for Christmas Catechization practice. Ate lunch, made copies for St. Petri's service this evening. Ate a hasty supper and ran up to St. Petri.

The St. Petri kids did wonderfully in their Catechization this evening. We had a nice visit after the service. Inge was getting tired and cranky by the time we left. She fell asleep on the way home. So when we got home she was wide awake.

We got the rest of the kids in bed. Mary fed Inge, set her down. She tripped and discovered a Little-Tike's car; grabbed it and waddled off at high-speed.

The next thing I hear is a splash.

Apparently, Inge thought the car was either a boat or a Personal Flotation Device and went to the nearest body of open water to test her theory: the main bathroom toilet.

Washed her, washed it. Let her wander around a bit longer and then put her in bed.

Soon, Mary and I can get some shut-eye.

Sleepy Time tea by R.C. Bigelow. Inc. Yum.

Hopefully we'll be over this bug in a couple of more days.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Nazareth Christmas Program, ...

Today was also busy. yes, three services. The usual. But at second service I was a bit worried. When I write the Christmas Catechization Programs I try to time them at under an hour, but one can never tell how well the kids will do.

They did great. Nazareth held their Christmas Program today during regular worship times. I must remember to schedule it differently next year so the other parish members can attend. The most profound statement came from Henry B. "Pastor, it was beautiful." He was crying. Henry is such a dear, dear child of God.

I hope to post the Catechization soon at the Diatheke blog. I use the Christmas program as a Catechization on the chief parts of Martin Luther's Small Catechism. This year the focus was on the Sacrament of the Alter. So I chose to have the children recite the prophecies of the Old Testament and the Catechism that applied to how the Christ Child would give us salvation through the Sacrament of His Holy Body and Blood.

At Oak Park we had a dinner after church for the four newborns in our congregation in celebration of their Baptisms.

In the evening I was privileged to have a home visit with a member going through a very great trial.

And when I came home, there were my wife and children-even Jeremy on the phone with Matt.

Now, Mary and I are going to cozy up together with a movie. I hope you have a wonderful Christmas season.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Saturday's business

Well, we had worship this morning at Mt. Olive. The sermon was on John the Baptizer. One main question I asked myself and my congregation was what if we knew that we faced imprisonment or certain death for simply calling a sin a sin against God? Do we worry about family, friends, and loved ones? Or do we, like John, point to Christ as the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the World?

I spent some time with Howard F. today. He is doing both well and horribly. His attitude is good. And he is able to move his right side now, to some degree. He can use his left hand to feed himself. But the stroke debilitated his gag reflex, so he can only eat small amounts of food that are the consistency of honey or pudding. And there is the constant danger that the food will fill his lungs. Please keep him and his family in your prayers.

I didn't get to see Kevin today. I stopped by for Zak's confirmation class, got home for lunch. Got Donna to her nap and went to do a family visit with Cheryl. Cheryl was hospitalized last night and they were worried that she was having heart problems. She's doing fine right now, and is home. Rod came home for her, even though he had to deal with the massive oil spill at Staples, MN. Rod is one of the main pipeliners that ensures the safety of the public and the oil pipelines in MN.

I'm thankful that there are guys like him and those in his family that do this kind of stressful work. Please keep Cheryl and Rod in your prayers.

We had program/Christmas catechization practice at Nazareth this evening. Then I had an urgent family visit. I got home kind of late and needed to finish printing the program for Naz tomorrow.

Incidentally, there are several members of our congregations who are going through some very difficult issues right now. Some due to the economy, some due to other reasons.

With all the hospitalizations and the individual trials some of my members are facing, I ask you to keep us all in your prayers.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Another Long Friday

Today became long because I started to have a migraine on my way home.

I went to Fargo for Kory. He had surgery this morning to remove a cancerous tumor. The surgery went well. And all our expectations are that he will do well. But please keep him in your prayers.

Fargo isn't really a short drive. And some times I suffer from migraine headaches. It's kind of funny that I was talking about this with Aaron, Jill, and Carol when Kory was in the recovery room. It's funny because I didn't expect that I'd get one today.

But I did.

By the time I got to Twin Vally, MN the aura started in my left eye. When I got to Fertile, MN all I could think about was: "I wish I were home. I wish I were home."

The headlights from oncoming cars were horrible.

I got home safely at supper time. I didn't stop to see Howard, like I had hoped to this morning. I'll try to get to him Saturday.

I called Fred and Sarah to postpone our meeting till tomorrow night.

And Mary kept the kids from bothering me.

Icepack on my head, two advil, two tylenol, my pillow and darkness.

Around 9:00pm I was doing better and could start memorizing my sermon for Sat. morning.

This evening I got a call that another of my parish members was hospitalized. I can't disclose any details at this point, and maybe never. But please keep my parish members in your prayers.

Lot's to do tomorrow. But I feel a lot better now.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Marriage and the National Health Care Bills

I have known Allen Quist for 24 years. I went to school with his daughter, Emily, at Bethany Lutheran College. I stopped at their home that sad December 1986 when his wife, Diane, and their unborn child were killed in a car accident. Emily and the rest of the Quist children were finishing the gingerbread houses their mother had baked.

Allen served as a representative to the MN state House from 1982-1989. He ran for Governor of MN two times.

I designed the website for Allen's 1994 Gubernatorial race for Minnesota. And throughout that particular political race I came to know how vicious, how leftist, how liberal, and how slanderous the main stream media are.

If you watch the main news channels (NBC, CBS, ABC, CNN) they don't care about truth, all they care about is pushing progressivism, big government and anti-conservatism. These media outlets lie all the time about Christians and Christian and Jewish and other Constitutional Conservatives.

Back in the Wilson Administration, through Hoover, and into F.D.R. the main push of the progressives was that a large centralized government could be the answer to all humanity's problems. They subscribed to population control through many means: birth control, abortion, and the political acceptability of the parents. They sought federal government control over industry, farming, and the means of production. They succeeded with the Welfare State and the Great Society.

Marriage was redefined in Germany and the U.S. in those days in a way that suited the progressives. Many were sacrificed because they were deemed mentally or politically inferior.

Now, come to our time.

Well, many of you know that the institution of Marriage is being redefined to include homosexual/lesbian relationships in our day. Abortion is seen by the progressives as a right given by God.

Now we have this government bill that will force government takeover of the healthcare section of our U.S. economy.

[You need to remember that the Gov. has taken over mortgage loans, the banking industry, and also the automobile industry in the few months that Pres. Obama has been in office. And please read Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn's The Gulag Archipelago and understand that anyone who looks to government for security and safety can expect the same.]

Allen has looked at the current bills before the U.S. Senate and Legislature. Here is his discussion on how it affects the institution of marriage.

Huge Marriage Penalty in House, Senate Health Care Bills
by Allen Quist

There is a huge middle class marriage penalty hidden in the House and Senate health care bills. The penalty becomes evident by evaluating questions like the following: How much would two single people, each making $30,000 per year, pay for private health insurance if the Pelosi bill was in effect now? The answer is $1,320 per year for both individuals combined (based on the premium limits and subsidies outlined on the charts on p. 3). But how much would they pay for the same level of insurance under the Pelosi bill if they were to marry? Their combined cost would then be about $12,000 a year (the estimated cost for private insurance).

This extraordinary penalty people will pay, should they marry, extends all the way from a two-person combined income of $58,280 to $86,640, a spread of $28,360. A large number of people fall within this spread. As premiums for private insurance escalate, as expected, the marriage penalty will become substantially larger.

Once the income of Americans exceeds 400% of the Federal Poverty Level, there are no limits on the premiums they can be charged, and their premiums are no longer subsidized. The poverty level is much higher for two people living unmarried as compared to the same two people being married. That is why citizens in many cases will pay far more for insurance if they are married. Why should married people be subjected to financial discrimination?

The Senate bill also creates a marriage penalty, in this case by imposing a new tax on individuals who make $200,000 annually but it also applies to married couples making $250,000 each year. This marriage tax on the affluent, however, is just the tip of the marriage penalty iceberg in the Senate bill.
The Senate bill stipulates that two unmarried people, 52 years of age, with private insurance and a combined income of $60,000, $30,000 each, will pay a combined cost of $2,483 for medical insurance. Should they marry, however, they will pay a combined cost of $11,666 for insurance—a penalty of $9,183 for getting married (based on tables at:

This substantial marriage penalty applies to persons on individual insurance, but, as the Heritage Foundation’s Bob Moffit said: “if an employer has a health care benefits package that is 12 to 13 percent of payroll, and they can solve their problem by paying an 8 percent payroll tax [into the Exchange], I think they’re going to do it,” (New York Times, 9-30-09). And Howard Dean said that, “Small businesses with payrolls of less than half a million dollars don’t have to buy health insurance anymore for any of their employees.”(FNS, 11-29-09).

Businesses will shed their employees and health care dollars into the Exchange, but the dollars that are paid back out will be directed only to those who make less than 400% of the Federal Poverty Level. Those above the Poverty Level will receive none of their previous insurance benefits from businesses. For that reason the new system is income redistribution on steroids.

“Household” is defined in both bills as including those who can be claimed as dependents for federal income tax purposes thereby clarifying that adults can avoid the marriage penalty by living together unmarried. The new system provides a huge incentive for doing so.

The bills additionally contain De Facto salary caps. How much would a married couple pay for private insurance under the House bill if their income was $58,000 per year? The answer is $2,088. But what if their income increased by $1,000? Their annual premium would then be about $12,000. The economic penalty for going off the subsidized system is so severe that it will be difficult for people to increase their earnings beyond 400% of Poverty Level. The Senate bill works essentially the same way.

Senior citizens and small businesses have already been identified as big losers in the health care bills. Married citizens in the middle class need to be added to the list.

Health insurance premium costs for two adults with equal incomes if the Pelosi bill was in effect now:
Health insurance premium costs for two adults with equal incomes if the Pelosi bill was in effect now:

Combined yearly Income

Combined premium cost if single

Combined premium cost if married.


















Sources: The numbers on the chart are based on (a) a chart provided by The Committees on Ways & Means, Energy & Commerce, and Education & Labor, October 29, 2009, see chart on p. 3; (b) the current Federal Poverty Levels; see charts on p. 3; and (c) the estimate that two adults would pay $12,000 annually for individual health insurance with average benefits if their income exceeds 400% of the Federal Poverty Level.

2nd Week In Advent.

Sunday 12/6 Church at St. Petri, Nazareth, then Oak Park. Roxann called, Howard's kidneys were starting to fail. I went to the hospital in Fargo rather than to Hawley for Pastor Jaech's installation. Didn't get back til late. Howard has some ups and downs.

Ellie Nelson is now off glucose and appears to be able to maintain her own weight. She is in a regular isolet and not the high tech isolet. Hopefully she'll be able to come home soon. She already weighs much more than her brother, Eli.

Monday 12/7, tried to take the day off but ended up doing a lot of phone calls and writing. I did put up 5 quarts of pickled fish. They should be ready on the 16th.

Tuesday off to Fosston for dentist (Matt and Clara) and new tires on the car. Tried a visit on the way home. Shut-in not home.

Wayne O. is now home in Crookston. He's still in a lot of pain, but is doing better. Please keep him in your prayers.

Tried mon and tue to do a family visit, but they were unable.

Wed, tried visits in the morning, again, not home. Wed school in afternoon, Youthgroup Caroling in the evening. We had several different groups of kids, one group off to Fosston, a couple of groups to TRF, and I took a group to rural homes. My group got to 5 homes that evening.

Howard came home on Wed. He will be on hospice care. Please keep him in your prayers.

I talked to my mom last night. They've a lot of snow and had school canceled.

Thursday 12/10, off to TRF for shut-ins. Got to three. I tried another visit three different times but he wasn't home. Mavis is out of the hospital, and doing somewhat better. But she still is weak. Please keep her in your prayers. Ethel is hospitalized in TRF. She actually has the same room Mavis had on Friday. She was pretty perky, but still needs to get over her infection before she can have her surgery. Please keep her in your prayers.

I had a gluten reaction to the food I had at a restaurant that is usually very good at keeping GF. I'll have to call them to let them know that something was wrong.

Now I'm going to finish up on the Naz. Christmas program and try to get the Christmas Eve and Christmas Day services set up.

Saturday, December 05, 2009

Hospital visits and A Squirrel for Lunch

Wednesday 12/2 Hospital visit Fosston, Dennis M. Hip replacement. He's recovering well and is at home now. Please keep him in your prayers.
Wednesday school.

Thursday 12/3 Hospital visit Crookston, Wayne O., major back surgery. Wayne is recovering but is in a lot of pain. Please keep him in your prayers.

Friday 12/4 Hospital visit TRF, Mavis B. , she was having a lot of pain when Matt and I stopped by. I didn't get a prognosis. Please keep her in your prayers. I visited Ethel at the TRCC. Ethel had tests yesterday and is still awaiting surgery. Please keep her in your prayers.

Friday Louisa brought her friend, Brooke, home for supper. Lane L. brought Caleb over to stay with Matt. So we had 4 teenagers playing tricks on each other when they were supposed to be getting some shut-eye.

Saturday 12/5 Church at Mt. Olive. No Sat. School. I stopped by to see Kevin V. and went over to see Zak and Nitro. When I got home, Matt and Caleb had just come back from hunting. Caleb got a squirrel. I tried to teach them how to skin and gut it.

We fried it up for dinner. I didn't soak it as long as I'd like to, and I should have par-boiled it before frying, it was a little chewey. But tasted good.

I rolled it in corn flour with salt, pepper, and garlic powder. Fried it in bacon grease.

Louisa and Brooke didn't want any.

Girls! Go figure.

Tuesday, December 01, 2009


"The only man to have all his work done by Friday was Robinson Crusoe."
-The Teacher's Funeral, Richard Peck, p. 7, (Scholastic, 2004)

Evidently a maxim as old as the publication of Robinson Crusoe.

December 1st

1081 - Louis VI of France (d. 1137)
1083 - Anna Comnena, Byzantine historian (d. 1153)
1521 - Takeda Shingen, Japanese warlord (d. 1573)
1525 - Tadeáš Hájek, Czech physician and astronomer (d. 1600)
1549 - Johan van der Veeken, merchant/co-founder (VOC)
1566 - Philip, earl of Nassau-Dillenburg, gov of Ft Gorinchem/Nijmegen
1573 - Philippus Rovenius, [Rouveen], apostile
1580 - Nicolas-Claude Fabri de Peiresc, French astronomer (d. 1637)
1605 - Juan de Padilla, composer
1634 - John-Erasmus Quellinus, [Quellien], Flemish painter
1671 - Keill, mathematician
1671 - Francesco Stradivari, Italian violin maker/son of Antonius
1690 - Philip Yorke, 1st Earl of Hardwicke, Lord Chancellor of England (d. 1764)
1709 - Franz Xaver Richter, composer
1712 - Bernhard Christian Weber, composer
1716 - Etienne-Maurice Falconet, French sculptor (d. 1791)
1722 - A L Karschin, writer
1724 - Charles Theodoor, elector (Palts & Bayern)
1724 - Dismas Hatas, composer
1726 - Eggert Olafsson, Icelandic writer
1726 - Oliver Wolcott, US judge/signer (Declar of Independence)
1729 - Giuseppe Sarti, composer
1743 - Martin H Klaproth, German chemist (uranium)
1766 - Nikolai Mikhailovich Karamzin, Russian writer (d. 1826)
1779 - Pyotr Ivanovich Turchaninov, composer
1781 - Charles Philippe Lafont, composer
1784 - Francois Henri Joseph Castil-Blaze, composer
1787 - Pavel Ivanovich Dulgorukov, composer
1792 - Lobachevsky, mathematician
1810 - Joseph Gungl, composer
1814 - August Rockel, composer
1823 - Ernest Reyer, composer
1826 - William Mahone, Major General (Confederate Army), died in 1895
1832 - Archibald Gracie Jr, Brig General (Confederate Army), died in 1864
1835 - Micah Jenkins, Brig General (Confederate Army), died in 1864
1844 - Alexandra, Danish princess/Queen of Great Britain/Ireland
1844 - Alfred Cellier, composer
1847 - Agathe Grondahl, composer
1850 - Peter Erasmus Lange-Muller, composer
1869 - Eligiusz Niewiadomski, Polish assassin of Gabriel Narutowicz (d. 1923)
1871 - Archie MacLaren, cricketer (424 Lancashire v Somerset 1895)
1873 - Charles JM Ruys de Beerenbrouck, premier of Neth (1918-25, 29-33)
1873 - Valery Bryusov, Russian poet (d. 1924)
1874 - Dominicus Johner, composer
1876 - Johanna W "Mina" Bakker, Dutch actress (Boefje)
1878 - Arthur B Spingarn, US NAACP-chairman (1940-65)
1883 - Romanos Hovakimi Melik'yan, composer
1884 - Torben Myer, Copenhagen Denmark, actor (Girl Who Came Back)
1884 - Karl Schmidt-Rottluff, German painter (d. 1976)
1885 - Guy de Lioncourt, composer
1886 - Jack Crawford, cricketer (England all-rounder in 12 Tests 1905-08)
1886 - Pierre Kemp, Dutch poet (Fugitives & Constants)
1886 - Rex Stout, mystery writer (Nero Wolf)
1886 - Willem E Crown, Antillian writer
1886 - Rex Stout, American author (d. 1975)
1891 - Foppe G Scheltema, Dutch lawyer (wreck laws)
1893 - Ernst Toller, writer
1893 - Herman Griffith, cricketer (pioneering WI pace bowler)
1895 - Henry Williamson, English author (d. 1977)
1896 - Petko Staynov, composer
1897 - Manuel A Neat, Curacaos author (Nobleza di Coerazon)
1898 - Cyril Ritchard, Sydney Australia, actor (Peter Pan, Hans Brinker)
1899 - Robert Welch, found John Birch Society
1901 - Dorothy James, composer
1901 - Ilona Feher, Hungarian-Jewish violinist (d. 1988)
1902 - Morris "Red" Badgro, Wash, NFL hall of famer (Yanks, Giants, Dodgers)
1904 - W A "Tony" Boyle, United Mine Workers president
1905 - Charles Finney, US, author (Circus of Dr Lao)
1905 - Ida Carroll, musician
1905 - Alexander Wilson, Canadian and Notre Dame athlete (d. 1994)
1906 - Jean Cartan, composer
1908 - Georgios Kasassoglou, Greek musician (d. 1984)
1909 - Jan Koplowitz, writer
1910 - Dame Markova, [Alicia Lilian Alice Marks], London, ballerina
1910 - Joel Fluellen, LA, actor (Burning Cross, Learning Tree)
1911 - Walter Alston, baseball manager (Dodgers)
1911 - Calvin Griffith, Canadian-born baseball executive (d. 1999)
1912 - Minoru Yamasaki, architect (World Trade Center, NY)
1912 - Terence Beckles, pianist/teacher
1913 - Mary Martin, Weatherford Tx, actress (Peter Pan) Larry Hagman's mom
1914 - Dame Alicia Markova, ballerina (Diaghilev Ballet Russe 1925-32)
1914 - Johnny Johnston, St Louis Mo, singer (Make that Spare)
1917 - Marty Marion, baseball player (NL MVP 1944)
1917 - William Tracy, Pitts, actor (To the Shores of Tripoli)
1918 - Kirby Laing, English contractor/multi-millionaire
1919 - Anne Cox Chambers, Dayton Ohio, US ambassador to Belgium (1977-81)
1919 - Ike Isaacs, guitarist
1921 - Ralph Manza, SF Calif, actor (Banacek, Mama Malone, Newhart)
1922 - Geraldine McCulloug, Maywood Ill, painter/sculptor (Phoenix)
1922 - Paul Picerni, NYC, actor (Agent Lee Hobson-Untouchables)
1922 - Vsevolod Bobrov, Soviet ice hockey player (d. 1979)
1923 - Stansfield Turner, CIA director
1923 - Morris, Belgian cartoonist (Lucky Luke) (d. 2001)
1925 - David Doyle, Omaha Neb, actor (John Bosley-Charlie's Angels)
1925 - Jaime Mendoza-Nava, composer
1925 - Jordan Klein, Miami Fla, cameraman/director (Thunderball)
1925 - Martin Rodbell, American scientist, Nobel laureate (d. 1998)
1926 - Allyn Ann McLerie, Quebec, actress (Tony Randall Show, Thorn Birds)
1926 - Keith Michell, Adelaide Australia, actor (6 Wives of Henry VIII)
1926 - Robert Symonds, Bristow Okla, actor (Robert E Lee-Blue & Gray)
1927 - Grant Beglarian, composer
1929 - Alan Mouncer, film director/producer
1929 - Dick Shawn, Buffalo NY, actor (Producers, Maid to Order, Angel)
1929 - Emily McLaughlin, White Plains NY, actress (Jessie-General Hospital)
1929 - Leon Biriotti, composer
1930 - Joachim Hoffmann, German historian (d. 2002)
1931 - Jimmy Lyons, American musician (d. 1986)
1931 - Jim Nesbitt, singer (d. 2007)
1932 - Robert T Herres, Denver Colo, USAF/astronaut
1932 - Matt Monro, English singer (d. 1985)
1933 - Fujiko F. Fujio, Japanese cartoon artist (d. 1996)
1933 - Lou Rawls, American singer (d. 2006)
1934 - Billy Paul, Phila, singer (Me & Mrs Jones)
1934 - Hilly Axwijk, Suriname social worker
1935 - Lou Rawls, Chic Ill, vocalist (Dean Martin's Golddigers, Natural Man)
1935 - Roger Christian, US, ice hockey player (Olympic-gold-1960)
1935 - Woody Allen, [Allen Konigsberg], Bkln, actor (Zelig, Annie Hall)
1937 - Gordon Crosse, Bury Lancashire England, composer (Grace of Todd)
1937 - Chuck Low, American actor
1937 - Vaira Vīķe-Freiberga, 6th President of Latvia
1938 - Bill Playle, cricketer (NZ batsman in 8 Tests without distinction)
1938 - Sandy Nelson, Santa Monica, 50s rocker (Teen Beat, All Night Long)
1939 - Dianne Lennon, LA Calif, singer (Lennon Sisters)
1939 - Lee Buck Trevino, Dallas Tx, PGA golfer (US Open 1968, 71)
1940 - Matthias Habich, actor (Straight to the Heart, A Corps Perdu)
1940 - Mike Denness, cricketer (England batsman & captain mid-70s)
1940 - Richard Pryor, Ill, comedian/actor (Lady Sings the Blues, Stir Crazy)
1940 - Ron Finn, Toronto, NHL linesman
1942 - John Crowley, US, sci-fi author (Deep, Beasts, Novelty)
1942 - Peter Kalikow, Queens NYC, real estate developer/publisher (NY Post)
1943 - Nicholas Peter Negroponte, NYC, founder/director (Media Lab at MIT)
1943 - Orton Enderlein, German FR, luge (Olympic-gold-1964)
1944 - Pierre Arditi, French film and stage actor
1944 - Eric Bloom, American musician (Blue Öyster Cult)
1944 - Tahar Ben Jelloun, French writer of Moroccan origin
1944 - Daniel Pennac, French writer born in Morocco
1944 - Michael W. Hagee, 33rd Commandant of the United States Marine Corps
1945 - John Densmore, LA, drummer (Doors-C'mon Light My Fire)
1945 - Ross Edwards, cricketer (Aussie middle-order bat of the 70's)
1945 - Bette Midler, American actress and singer
1946 - Gilbert O'Sullivan, Ireland, singer (Alone Again Naturally)
1946 - Ho-Jun Li, Korea PR, rifle (Olympic-gold-1972)
1947 - Alain Bashung, French singer
1947 - Bob Fulton, English-born Australian rugby league footballer
1948 - Sarfraz Nawaz, cricketer (successful Pakistani pace bowler 1969-84)
1948 - George Foster, American baseball player
1948 - Tom Wright, English bishop and theologian
1949 - Pablo Escobar Gaviria, Colombian drug baron
1949 - Sebastián Piñera, Chilean businessman and presidential candidate
1950 - Richard Keith, Lafayette La, actor (Little Ricky-I Love Lucy)
1950 - Keith Thibodeaux, American actor and drummer
1951 - Alexander Panayotov Aleksandrov, Bulgaria, cosmonaut (Soyuz TM-5)
1951 - Eric Bloom, rock vocalist/guitarist (Blue Oyster Cult)
1951 - Jaco Pastorius, US jazz guitarist (Weather Report-Word of Mouth)
1951 - Treat Williams, Rowayton CT, actor (Flashpoint, Hair)
1951 - Jaco Pastorious, jazz bassist and composer (Weather Report)
1954 - Bob Goen, TV host (Wheel of Fortune, Entertainment Tonight)
1955 - Uwe Benter, German FR, coxsman (Olympic-gold-1972)
1955 - Mark Thompson, American disc jockey and actor
1955 - Verónica Forqué, Spanish actress
1956 - Stuart Kimball, rock guitarist (Face To Face)
1956 - Julee Cruise, American singer and actress
1958 - Charlene Tilton, San Diego Calif, actress (Lucy Ewing-Dallas)
1959 - Billy Childish, English painter, writer and musician
1959 - Rick Leventhal, American broadcast journalist
1959 - Wally Lewis, Australian rugby league footballer
1960 - Carol Alt[man], Queens NY (Mrs Ron Greshner)/actress (Private Parts)
1960 - Carol Alt, American supermodel
1961 - Barb Mucha, Parma OH, LPGA golfer (1992 Oldsmobile Classic)
1961 - Jeremy Northam, English actor
1961 - Armin Meiwes, German cannibal
1962 - Pamela McGee, WNBA center/forward (Sacramento Monarchs)
1962 - Stan Albers, Pleasant Beach NJ, actor (Curtis-Loving)
1962 - Joe Quesada, American comic book writer
1963 - Arjuna Ranatunga, cricketer (Sri Lankan Test batsman since 1982)
1963 - Marco Greco, Brazilian racing driver
1964 - Soren Henriksen, Denmark cricket all-rounder (86-94 ICC, Lancs 85-86)
1964 - Salvatore Schillaci, Italian footballer
1966 - Joseph Abrahamson, Oklee, Minnesota, Pastor (Clearwater Lutheran Parish)
1966 - Craig David Parry, Sunshine Victoria, PGA golfer (1994 Honda-2nd)
1966 - Greg McMichael, Knoxville TN, pitcher (Atlanta Braves)
1966 - Matthew Laborteaux, actor (Killing Stone, Deadly Friend)
1966 - Mike Flores, NFL defensive end (Washington Redskins)
1966 - Steve Walsh, NFL quarterback (Chic Bears)
1966 - Katherine LaNasa, American actress
1967 - Nestor Carbonell, NYC, actor (Luis-Suddenly Susan)
1967 - Reggie Sanders, Florence SC, outfielder (Cin Reds)
1968 - Anders Holmertz, Swedish free style swimmer (world record 400m)
1968 - Eddie Britton, wide reciever (Baltimore Ravens)
1968 - Steve Walsh, quarterback (Tampa Bay Buccaneers)
1968 - Justin Chadwick, British actor and director
1970 - Kirk Rueter, Centralia IL, pitcher (Montreal Expos)
1970 - Takahiro Ikenoue, WLAF LB (Rhein Fire)
1970 - Todd Steussie, NFL guard/tackle (Minnesota Vikings)
1970 - Jouko Ahola, Finnish strongman
1970 - Sarah Silverman, American actress and comedian
1971 - Oscar Sturgis, WLAF DE (Frankfurt Galaxy)
1971 - Rob Zatechka, NFL guard (NY Giants)
1971 - Tom Robsock, NFL/WLAF guard (Raiders, Barcelona Dragons)
1971 - Stephanie Finochio, American professional wrestler
1971 - Dolgorsürengiin Serjbüdee, Mongolian professional wrestler
1971 - Peter Van de Veire, Belgian radio-presenter
1971 - John Schlimm, American author
1972 - Andre Royal, linebacker (Carolina Panthers)
1972 - Charlie Jones, wide reciever (San Diego Chargers)
1972 - Norbert Wójtowicz, Polish historian and theologian
1973 - Eric Thomas, Chartage Texas, 400m hurdler
1973 - Mia Farrance, Melbourne VIC Australia, canoeist (Olympics-96)
1973 - Jon Theodore, American musician
1974 - Richard Jordan, linebacker (Detroit Lions)
1974 - Costinha, Portuguese footballer
1974 - David Ludwig, American composer
1975 - Alya Rohali, Miss Universe-Indonesia (1996)
1975 - Sandra Maidana, Miss Universe-Uruguay (1996)
1975 - Sophia Skou, Danish swimmer
1976 - Konerak Sinthasomphone, Milwaukee Wisc, Jeffrey Dahmer's victim
1976 - Brently Heilbron, American satirist
1976 - Matthew Shepard, American murder victim (d. 1998)
1977 - Jared Fogle, American Subway spokesperson
1977 - Brad Delson, American guitarist (Linkin Park)
1978 - Mat Kearney, American singer and songwriter
1979 - Ryan Malone, American Hockey Player
1979 - Angelique Bates, American Actress
1980 - Mohammad Kaif, Indian cricketer
1988 - Zoe Kravitz, daughter of Lisa Bonet & Lenny Kravitz
2001 - Aiko, Princess Toshi of Japan

On this date in:

1824 The House of Representatives convened to decide the presidential election because no candidate had received a majority in the Electoral College. John Quincy Adams was eventually chosen the winner over Andrew Jackson and Henry Clay.

1913 The first drive-in automobile service station opened, in Pittsburgh.

1919 Lady Astor was sworn in as the first female member of the British Parliament.

1934 Sergei M. Kirov, the head of the Communist Party in Leningrad, was assassinated as Soviet leader Josef Stalin began a massive purge that would claim tens of millions of lives.

1942 Nationwide gasoline rationing went into effect in the United States.

1955 Rosa Parks, a black seamstress, defied the law by refusing to give up her seat to a white man aboard a Montgomery, Ala., city bus. Parks was arrested, sparking a year-long boycott of the buses by blacks.

1963 The Beatles' first single, "I Want to Hold Your Hand," was released in the United States.

1965 An airlift of refugees from Cuba to the United States began in which thousands of Cubans were allowed to leave their homeland.

1969 The U.S. government held its first draft lottery since World War II.

1973 David Ben-Gurion, Israel's first prime minister, died at age 87.

1991 Ukrainians voted overwhelmingly for independence from the Soviet Union.

1992 Amy Fisher was sentenced to five to 15 years in prison for shooting and seriously wounding Mary Jo Buttafuoco, the wife of the teenager's lover, Joey Buttafuoco, on New York's Long Island. (She served seven years.)

1997 A 14-year-old student opened fire on a morning prayer group at a high school in West Paducah, Ky., killing three students and wounding five.

2000 Vicente Fox was sworn in as president of Mexico, ending 71 years of ruling-party domination.

2004 Tom Brokaw signed off for the last time as anchor of the "NBC Nightly News."

Saints Commemorated

Website for Howard

Roxanne has put up a caringbridge website so you can follow the progress Howard is making since his stroke yesterday morning.

I have it referenced on the left side of this blog so those who want can still get to it.

I'm Sorry

I just got word that some neighbors (who don't attend our congregations, though they used to be members) were disappointed and angry that I didn't visit their son (who also hasn't attended our congregations since well before I was called 8 years ago) in the hospital.

Neither they nor their son called me to let me know he was in trouble. If they had called, I would have tried to visit. Perhaps they are under the assumption that I should know somehow.

Hospitals do not call pastors unless the patient explicitly directs them to. And even then they sometimes do not because of staffing shortages, emergencies, etc.

Now, one of the problems I face is that I have 4 congregations and am spread very thin already just with worship and confirmation class. I have 15 or so members who are truly shut-in. That is, they cannot leave the place where they live on their own or even with the assistance of their families. The places vary from year to year but these members are commonly scattered from Warren, Thief River Falls (5 separate locations in that city), Oklee, Red Lake, Grygla, Red Lake Falls, Clearbrook, Bemidji, Erskine, Fosston, Macintosh--some at home, some in nursing homes.

All of my shut-ins are neglected. It isn't possible for me to get to them all regularly.

I wrote about this in my pastoral report last January.

Here is how I prioritize.

Worship services and my teaching schedule consume 13 hours each week. That's not prep time, thats the actual worship/teaching and driving time. Sermon writing/memorizing takes between 8 and 20 hours a week depending upon the text and what's going on in the congregations. Prep for teaching Saturday school and the confirmands takes 2 to 3 hours a week.

These things must be done each week. Add a sick call, or a funeral there must be a trade off.

So I prioritize.

1) Someone calls me to the hospital/make a sick call. I will go. Unless this call comes from a 3rd party about a non-member. Legally a third party invitation is not an invitation and the hospital can treat it as a violation of privacy. Frankly, it is not my business that a person who is not part of my congregations is in the hospital unless they make it my business. The third party who wants me to visit needs to have that person or his family call me.

Nonetheless, these calls are of the highest priority and I will cancel shut-in and other visits in an effort to see the sick person: as I did yesterday so I could go to Fargo for a sick member.

2) A call from a member to a family/personal emergency-not life threatening or medical will take priority over shut-in calls. I will never go to such an emergency on the basis of a 3rd party notification. That is gossip. If the call comes from a family member involved in the problem, then I will go.

3) Shut-in visits. There are 15 real shut-ins in our parish right now. I try to visit them every month. But I don't get to them that often. Some of them I get to even more rarely. There are about 12 people who are borderline shut-ins that can get to church on their own or with family help, but choose not to. There are 3 who do get to church occasionally.

The priority in shut-in visits is to feed the hungry with God's Word and Sacrament. Those who are genuinely unable to get to church for word and Sacrament get the highest priority. Those who do get to church are already being fed. Those who can but don't are a special case. And while I try to get out to the lost sheep, I need my congregations to fill in this role more often. Because I can't be everywhere.

A typical shut-in visit is about 3 hours (including driving). There is no typical hospital/sick call. Very often they end up taking from 6 to 12 hours at a time, depending on the severity.

If I am sick I will not go on shut-in visits. I may go on a hospital call but will wear mask, gloves and gown. When our family is sick it can be a month before we are well enough for me to go on shut-in visits. Think about it. If our family gets sick just 3 times in the year, that's three months when I can't visit.

I'm also involved in going out and visiting people who have asked about our faith and congregations. Right now I have 5 different families that I'm working with toward bringing them into our common confession of faith. It takes time, and it takes visits. These have the lowest priority. That's why it takes so long.

I want you to know, whomever you are (whether my shut-ins or the non-member who for some reason expected me to know and visit) that I have not tried to neglect visiting you. I do want you to understand my position forces some serious limitations upon me.

And if you yourself don't let me know you want me to visit, please don't hold that against me.

Just call me. If you have any helpful suggestions on how I can better prioritize let me know.

Notice, I didn't include 4 Ladies' Aids, 3 Sunday Schools, 4 Voters' Assemblies, and the Parish Board meetings in this.

It adds up. I'm still doing the best I can.

So if you want me there, you need to call me.

Getting Back to you

OK, heres the photo from 11/20 when we baptized Ellie. Ellie is still in the hospital at GF. She seems to be doing somewhat better. They have reduced her glucose intake quite a bit, but she still cannot maintain her bloodsugar level. Please keep her and her folks in your prayers.

Evelyn G passed away last Monday morning (11/23), we had visitation on friday evening with funeral at St. Petri on Saturday. Please keep her family in your prayers.

Monday evening I went over to Quinten and Alyssa's and we baptized Eli.

Tuesday the 24th I did shut-in visits, hospital visits, and an emergency family visit. Ethel J. still hasn't been able to have surgery. Please keep her in your prayers.

Wednesday and Thursday we had our 4 Thanksgiving day services, one at each of the congregations.

Here's some smoked trout that was given to us. It was great. The kids loved to eat the bones.

Matt and I finished up cleaning the deer. Now we have just a few bags of venison steak sitting
I tried a meat roll. If it turns out I'll give the recipe.

Mom, Dad, and Jeremy arrived Thursday afternoon.
We had our Thanksgiving meal on Friday. Then I went to the visitation for Evelyn.

Saturday morning, Mom, Dad, and Jeremy went to church with me at Mt. Olive and left for their place from church.

I had Evelyn's funeral that Sat. afternoon.

Three services on Sunday morning. I took a nap and then met a person for personal spiritual counseling for a couple of hours.

John wanted me to camp with him outside. I talked him into using the camper. Three times he kicked the covers off and was shivering. I covered him up (and me) and snuggled close with the blanket over our heads.

There was the noise of mice in one of the camper storage areas. John asked, "What's that?"

"The cat," I said.

"Oh, good," he said.

Monday morning, back ache.

"I'm cold!" I hear.


Elsie knocks on the door. "Dad, you've got to go to the hospital."

Howard F. had a stroke this Monday morning. Left side of the brain. No bleeding. He was transferred down to Merit Care in Fargo. I spent some time with the family this morning in Fosston and with Howard, Sylvia, Janet, and Roxanne this evening in Fargo. Please keep them in your prayers.

Home late.

Got the message that Dennis M. is in Fosston with hip-replacement surgery. Please keep him in your prayers.

New day.

Snow and wind.