October was Pastor Appreciation Month in the Southern Baptist Convention, but we at New Bethel Church were too involved and busy to give our pastor due treatment that month. (Or, maybe we’re slow. Jerald Harris, our moderator says, “It takes us an hour and a half to watch ‘Sixty Minutes’)
Whatever the reason, we decided mid-November was an excellent time to show our pastor, Dale Dunagan, how we feel about him — and, as Jodi Jackson said, “It’s been a long time since we did anything funny.”
So, last Sunday night when the benediction had been said after the evening worship service, Linda Cooper, music director, picked up a microphone and solemnly said “Everyone, please be seated.” She went on to explain. “Several people have approached me to ask that we do an investigation concerning our pastor,” The Rev. Dunagan looked startled, but the congregation was in on the secret, and they readily settled in for the inquiry.
Dale’s wife, Tonya, had also been in on the secret, and she had cooperated by supplying photos of various funny scenes from their life together. Outstanding was a Halloween picture of Dale wearing an overwhelming set of rubber dentures. This photo was also used to decorate his cake for the reception following the roast.
Several members offered testimonies on apparent character flaws in their pastor. For example, they declared that when the men had a work day to help with the house the Dunagans are renovating, Dale disappeared for several hours and, when he reappeared, he offered the explanation that he had been ‘trying to find his gloves.’
Finally, when the pastor was “roasted” sufficiently, the congregation adjourned to the Fellowship Hall for cake and coffee. There the pastor was presented a basket filled with congratulatory cards and money gifts which probably was more indicative of how Dale’s flock really feels about him. His only comment was “You surely are a sneaky bunch.”
A person I’ve re-met recently strikes me as a person who gets a great deal out of each day. She is Jean Kelley, and I first met her when her kids went to school at Byng. Our paths crossed again recently and I learned about several interesting things she is doing.
At her home, I met her “inside” dog, a very dignified, elderly schnauzer named Max. When I commented on his good looks, she said, "I sort of inherited Max. He belonged to Sylvia McDermot.”
She went on to say that she volunteers at one of Ada’s Assisted Living places, and she met Sylvia there. Max had come with Sylvia when she moved there, and both did very well for a while. Jean and Sylvia became friends, which was to be expected for both had an interest in crafts and in antiques. In her volunteer work, Jean tries to do things for residents to make their lives more pleasant, and she gradually came to help with the care of Max, giving him medication when he needed it, or taking him to the vet. Sylvia was in remission from cancer, but eventually it recurred, and when she realized she was not going to beat it this time, she asked Jean if she would take care of Mac after she was gone. (Sylvia had no family.)
Several years ago, George and I square danced with Hereford Whirlers, and we became friendly with Ralph and Sylvia McDermot. I remembered when they bought the schnauzer pup they called Max. I remember going to Ralph’s funeral, and I kept in touch with Sylvia for a time. (They owned a home in Konawa.) Eventually, I lost touch with her, but it was like meeting an old friend again to get re-acquainted with Max.
If I had to leave a treasured pet with someone, I’d certainly recommend Jean. When Max developed an eye infection and local vets were unable to help him, she took Max to an opthomologist in Oklahoma City. He was able to preserve Max’s eyesight, but she continues to take him for treatments.
Jean and her husband, Robert, have two “outside” dogs, but she says Max is very aloof with them. “He obviously doesn’t think they’re in his class,” Jean laughs. “He’s very smart and obedient, but he’s not the least bit affectionate. We have a good relationship. We’re friends”
Winnie Poague and I made our annual trip do Branson, Mo., last week, going as we usually do with Mattie House tours. There is a group of people from this area who go, if at all possible, every time Mattie and her husband, Gary, announce a trip. The Corky Wilson family of Byng is one that has travelled with her for years, and all the travelers were deeply saddened when Corky’s wife, Mary, died of cancer on January 24, 2008. Recently Mattie compiled a cookbook from recipes sent in by all those who toured with her.
It was ready for distribution when the group toured Canada in the summer. The book was dedicated in loving memory of Mary Wilson, and a beautiful picture of her was at the front of the book. Luckily for us, Mattie had a few books left and both Winnie and I bought one while we were on the Branson trip. We knew Mary’s reputation as a cook and were pleased that her family had submitted many of her favorite recipes.
For unto us a child is born
A lot of folks don’t believe in the hereafter, but it’s one of the most certain things there is. There is going to be something here after you are gone. Two are working in a field: One is taken; one is left. The world just keeps on turning, marrying and giving in marriage.
Protect your home during the holidays
The holiday season finds many people making plans to gather with family and friends to spend quality time together.
How could God allow such?
If you count the area most of us consider to be Ada, our community is roughly the same size as Newtown, Conn. where a deranged 20 year old snuffed out the lives of 26 innocents, including 20 children.
Holiday goodies pack on the pounds
I read recently that the average person gains seven pounds in the six-week period starting Nov. 15 and ending Jan. 2.
A better use of the Mayan calendar
Few things are more disturbing than predictions of the end of the world. Not because there’s any validity to them. As Hank Hanegraaff, The Bible Answer Man says, end time predictions are notable only because they are 100 percent wrong, 100 percent of the time.
Keeping your home safe from freezing temperatures
When the weather outside dips into freezing temperatures, the last thing homeowners want to deal with is frozen pipes, or worse yet, busted pipes.
Ten truths for college grads
My kids are grown and out of the house, but even if they weren’t, they’re tired of hearing me say it.
- Fall is best time to plant trees
- Making bread topic for Extension Café set Thursday in Ada
Report shows continuing challenges
The last unemployment report to be released before the election reiterates how far we have to go to reach pre-recession levels of prosperity. The 7.9 percent unemployment rate recorded for October is up slightly from September’s 7.8 percent. Even more discouraging, it is slightly higher than the 7.8 percent recorded when President Obama first took office while the recession was at its peak.
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- For unto us a child is born