Happy New Year-!...Reflections from Year 2005

2005 started off with a international disaster-relief campaing for the "Asian Tsunami". It was such a global impact that I contacted as many of my former/current UMM Int'l Student friends that had some direct/indirect impact. I was very glued to the fundraiser campaign that I even posted a website to connect the people I know.

Then our nation felt a "somewhat" similar situation with the largest number of hurricaines to hit our "southern" backyard. I did the same thing-made a website to connect the people I know impacted by Hurricaine Katrina- mostly in Louisiana. Other places in the world that didn't get much related coverage (Guatamala, Honduras, etc...)

The year also had some personal positive highlights-most with the community I currently live at- Morris:
-One was my trip to St. Paul with a friend of mine from Japan, who I introduced to other UMM Alumns (one I haven't seen for 9 years!).
-My first ever Airshow, which was held in Fargo, North Dakota
-Another was my 10th Year Harding High School Reunion back in my "old neighborhood" of Battle Creek Park in St. Paul, Minnesota. It was a good time to touch base with former high school alumns and friends, which is very hard to keep in touch with as I've made new friends in Morris. I'll try to do my best to keep in touch with them in the future!
-Lastly was the continued work from last year's involvement with:

  • Blandin Community Leadership Program (got a certificate, but most imporantly met a lot of cool people from the Morris community)
  • Stevens County Youth Mentoring Program
    Morris Literacy Project (won Outstanding Volunteer Award)
  • Most Excellent Way (a ministry focus group to help people with all types of addictions: drugs, alcohol, etc..) held at the "old" Morris Community Church building
  • working with the physically challenged population with several community organizations/companies

    Heading to 2006
    I’m looking forward to a New Year-2006 as I start to “close the books” on 2005. I plan to just continue what I wrote from "last year". I need to constantly remember and be thankful of God’s goodness this past year to keep going on to the next year. Yes, we live in “trouble times” (cancer, deaths, natural disasters, terrorism, etc..) but also we can’t forget the “good times” (births, baptisms, graduations, weddings, concerts, sports championships/moments, etc...) to persevere through the up-coming seasons and challenges. If you don’t look forward to the years ahead-ask yourself this question: “Where am I putting my hope in (finances, own self, government, etc..”) totally?....Jesus…Heavenly Father (see my personal testimony) ! I love reading those quotes in church signs when I travel. One of them that I like to remember is, "Don't forget to count your blessings". Reflect and write down what you've been thankful for this past year before you move on to 2005. Then if you have already have put your hope (e.g. peace within) in God, “How are you going to be a blessing with what God has given you (gifts, talents, skills, interests, etc…) to others “unfortunate” as you are: locally? Nationally? Gobally? Seek Him daily for His purpose for your life! Learn from past mistakes and pray!


    Challenges and Blessings of 2005

    LOCALLY

    -CAHS Football Team, goes to Fargo for the playoffis!
    -Tragic Goal Post Homecoming Incident that Killed UMM Student (not found yet as the year comes to an end
    -Morris National Guard, coming home from Iraq

    STATELY

    NATIONALLY

    -1..2 punch Hurricanes in Louisiana

    GLOBALLY

    -Asian Tsunami Post-Christmas Disaster 2004*just added this after New Year 2005!

    Rewind 2005: Top 10 , from Fox News

    Includes the 87,000+ death from the Pakistani earthquake towards the end of the year

    Top 10 Stories of 2005, from Christianity Today

    " The events, people, and debates of the past year that Christianity Today's news editors and writers believe have shaped, or will significantly shape, evangelical life, thought, or mission." by CT staff | posted 12/19/2005 09:00 a.m.

    1. Hurricane Katrina Pounds Gulf Coast: Storm prompts local churches, denominations, and ministries to deliver unprecedented aid response.
    2. Tsunami Spurs Massive Relief Effort: Christians quickly mobilize financial assistance after massive tsunami devastates parts of Southeast Asia in late 2004.
    3. Benedict XVI Succeeds John Paul II: Evangelicals mourn loss of advocate for orthodoxy and culture-of-life champion. Cardinals stick with John Paul II's legacy and replace him with doctrinal watchdog Joseph Ratzinger.
    4. Terri Schiavo Dies: Controversy over pulling feeding tube and Congress's response sparks firestorm regarding end-of-life decisions and evangelical politics.
    5. Supreme Court Vacancies Trigger Debate: Christian conservatives push hard for "strict constructionists, " with mixed results. Senate confirms John Roberts as chief justice. Harriet Miers faces determined criticism and withdraws; President Bush nominates Samuel Alito.
    6. Evangelicals Target Global Poverty: Christian activists join rock stars to lobby G-8 for debt relief, and Rick Warren unveils his PEACE plan.
    7. Media Spotlight Religion: 2004 "values voters" bring reporters into churches, Time releases list of 25 most influential evangelicals, The New York Times promises more religion coverage, and CNN hires full-time religion correspondent.
    8. Graham Leads Final Crusade: New York City marks the end of renowned evangelist's public ministry.
    9. Stem-Cell Research Worries Many: Cloning and funding march on; evangelical opinion seems split.
    10. Narnia Hits Theaters: Hollywood seeks "Passion dollars" with film adaptation of C. S. Lewis's The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe.

    Copyright © 2005 Christianity Today. Click for reprint information. December 2005, Vol. 49, No. 12, Page 18


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