Published 9:00 am Saturday, January 25, 2020

Duplicate Bridge

Duplicate bridge was played Jan. 14 at the Senior Center in Austin. Winners were Jim Fisher and Dave Ring, first place; Gail and Ray Schmidt, second place; Judy Bungum and Dave Solomonson, third place; and Vandy Newman and Ron Peters, fourth place. Duplicate bridge was played Jan. 15 at the Austin Senior Center. Winners were Millie Siever and Fisher, first place; Romelle and Stan Schultz, second place; Bonnie Fritz and Loren Cleland, third place; and Ring and Rich Stroup, fourth place.

Duplicate Bridge is played weekly at 12:30 p.m. Tuesdays and noon Wednesdays. Players come from Austin, Adams, Rose Creek, Albert Lea, Northwood and Mason City. All bridge players are encouraged to compete with these groups. Those who need a partner can call 507-437-2750 to guarantee their seat.

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First Lutheran Church Women

First Lutheran Church Women met at 1:15 p.m. Dec. 11 in Bethany Hall with prelude music provided by Joan Holt. Jo Hanson, co-president, welcomed members and guests. Ruth Noren gave devotions from “Jesus Calling for Christmas” and read verses 1 and 2 of the hymn “In the Bleak Midwinter.” These readings discuss how a child born in the darkness of winter became the light of the world. The group then read the FLCW purpose led by Hanson. Holt conducted the installation of the 2020 officers.

Hanson introduced the Rev. John Holt and Joan, who provided special Christmas music selections. Holt shared an Advent poem written by Hanson.  He was accompanied by his guitar while singing “O Holy Night” and “Mary, Did You Know?” A parody of “I Wonder as I Wander” was shared. 

Hanson also introduced the speaker, Judy Menssen. Menssen shared many memories of growing up in the Bricelyn area and some photos of Christmas memories of the past, such as making cookies and giving them away, and leaving extra hay for the animals, a Scandinavian custom that was practiced. Stories of blending five boys and one girl into the Menssen family provided laughter. Two bachelor brothers and their sister had their first color photo taken by Menssen’s family. In 1954 when her brother was confirmed, the class photo was in color, having been introduced just that year.  Menssen shared that their family actually did go over the river and into the woods to celebrate, just as the old song lyrics say. She concluded her speech by asking the group a few Christmas trivia questions.

Hanson called the business meeting to order. The secretary’s minutes from the Nov. 13 meeting were approved as printed by a motion from treasurer Cindy Gandrud and seconded by Pam Stern. Gandrud reported the balance on hand in the checking and savings accounts as of Nov. 30. There are funds in reserve from the sale of the cookbooks with some left to sell. Cookbooks will be available in the church office. An electric floor scrubber and a hot water heater were recently purchased from the treasury.

Corresponding secretary Bonnie Trampel read a thank you note from the Holts for the Kwik Trip gift card and the Advent luncheon. Thank you notes also were received from Good Earth Village and Mount Carmel Ministries. A poster was received from Bibles For The World and a newsletter from River Channels. Under committee reports Diane Damerow thanked everyone for the success of Holidays Ahead. Bonnie Anderson will chair the event in 2020. Hanson stated appreciation to Damerow and Rod and Mike of the maintenance staff. An addendum for the centennial cookbooks is available, including some corrections and recipes of two missing contributors. During the offering, the group sang “Away in a Manger” accompanied by Holt. Noren gave the offertory prayer. 

Hanson thanked the following individuals: Donna Ludtke and Gen Montei, ushers; Gandrud and Sheri Nicol and Gandrud, greeters; and chairperson Neva Mathison and her committee of Beth Breamer, Joyce Fredin, Cheryl Moran and LouJean Nelson, hostesses.

Caring and sharing chairperson Carol Colstrup and her committee served two funerals in November. 

Incoming co-president Janice Lestrud asked the group to express appreciation to outgoing co-presidents Hanson and Bonnie Schneider by round of applause. Lestrud also announced the group may draw for 2020 prayer partners during the coffee and dessert time. Prayer partners for 2019 were revealed.

The meeting closed with the Lord’s Prayer and singing of the table grace.