Published 9:00 am Sunday, May 10, 2015

St. John’s Auxiliary 

St. John’s Auxiliary met at 10:30 a.m. April 20 in St. John’s chapel. President Jan Jerdee welcomed everyone. Bonnie Schneider read “This is the Day the Lord has Made” and “I Said a Prayer for You Today.” The group sang “Jesus, the Very Thought of You,” accompanied by Irene Goskeson on piano.

The secretary and treasurer’s reports were given by Schneider and Leann Knutson. The were approved as read.

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Diane Wichmann read a thank you for the donation the group made to St. John’s building campaign.

Activities Director Shirley Leeman reported there were 963 volunteer hours for March, 10 day care hours, one You and Me Club and one sing-a-long. She also announced the activities for May as follows: May 1 was Jonny Bird Music; May 5 was L.A. Sasse; May 9 will be the Mother’s Day luncheon; May 10 is Mother’s Day; May 13 is Loren Wolfe; May 15 there will be a plant sale at the Highway 13 carport; May 18 there will be an auxiliary meeting; May 19 Richard Hagedorn; May 22 Kent Larson; May 25 is Memorial Day; and May 29 is Prom (Springtime in Paris). In addition there will also be usual monthly activities.

Schneider read the names of residents celebrating April birthdays and the birthday song was sung.

Churches thanked for serving Sunday coffee were Oakland Lutheran, Redeemer Lutheran (two) and Grace Lutheran. Sunday escorts were East Freeborn Lutheran and Concordia Pickerel Lake.

The program was provided by Norrine Jensen, 25 year music teacher for District 241 and plays at the community theater. The community theater is celebrating their 50th. Jensen entertained the group by singing many songs and playing the piano.

A table prayer was sung.

The meeting was closed with the Lord’s Prayer.


Sons of Norway

The Sons of Norway in Albert Lea will celebrate Syttende Mai with a banquet. Social time will begin at 5:30 p.m. with dinner starting at 6 p.m. May 22 at the Freeborn County Historical Museum. The meal of tossed salad, pork chop, potatoes, veggies, dinner roll and dessert will be followed by a special program. The cost of the event is $15 per person.

Eric Dregni, an associate professor of English and journalism at Concordia College, will share a vivid portrayal of modern Norway through the eyes of a generation of Norwegian Americans from Minnesota. He tells stories of his family’s yearlong Scandinavian life in Norway. Eric’s great-grandfather, Ellef, fled Norway in 1893 when it was the poorest country in Europe. More than 100 years later, his great-grandson traveled back to find it’s now the richest — mostly due to oil and natural gas discoveries.

He tells of the circumstances of his return. He had won a Fullbright Fellowship to go there arriving the same week he learned his wife, Katy, was pregnant, braving the birth abroad and benefitting from a remarkable health care system. The Dregni family came full circle when their son Eilif was born in Norway.

Dregni has much to tell and slides to share in his cross-country memoir. He recounts stories of his family’s yearlong experiment — staying warm in a remote grass roof hut and surviving dinner of rakfish also known as fermented fish. He tells of discovering his family roots.

According to a press release, the land of the midnight sun is stranger than some may have previously thought and the Dregnis encounters show that there is much to be learned from its unique and surprising culture.

On of the many books Dregni has authored is “In Cod We Trust” which is the story of a man not only looking for his family’s past, but welcoming the next generation.

The public is welcome to attend this presentation.

Those interested in attending must RSVP with payment before Friday to Ann Bryson, 22374 670th Ave., Alden, MN 56009 or call Paul or Leola Anderson at 507-373-2729 for reservations.


United Methodist Women

United Methodist Women met April 1. Pianist Merle Stensrud opened the meeting with a Lenten selection.

Members of Mary Grace Circle presented the program with the theme of the scripture’s account of the crucifixion and the resurrection. The participants were Norieta Rippentrop, Judy Kary, Jeanne Hangge and Jerry Horswell.

President Horswell thanked Mary Grace Circle for the program and Just Three Circle for serving.

The secretary’s and treasurer’s reports were given by JoAnn Seuser.

Carolyn Smith reported on recent statistics of the Emma Norton residence and Emma’s Place. In 2014, 235 women and children received housing and several families moved from Emma’s Place to safe, permanent housing. A fundraiser for the Emma Norton residence was on April 20 and included dinner and a silent auction.

Spiritual growth person Adean Turner gave readings, “The Tragedy of Good Friday” and the jelly bean prayer.

A community service project was done by Evan Peterson for the Simpson Shelter in Minneapolis. Peterson is a member of the United Methodist Church’s youth group.

The group’s next meeting was scheduled for 10 a.m. May 6. Just Three Circle had a memorial service at the program and the 11:30 a.m. luncheon was served by Mary Grace Circle.