Letters to the Editor
I remember first hearing about Habitat for Humanity. I was about 6 or 7, and my mom had just gotten a divorce, so we couldn’t afford to pay the rent. My mom heard about the program, she put our name in the raffle. Soon enough, we found out we had the house.
We started building the house right away. In the process of building our house, I learned that I loved to work. I always wanted to help; no matter if it was running an errand or hammering nails. Finally, after months of grueling work, we were finished. Of course, we still added more to our house, but the core of the house was finished.
It was a white house with a green trim, along with a similar carport, all surrounded by dirt hills. There was a barbed wire fence framing our yard, along with the extra touch of cows right outside this fence. It wasn’t too fancy, but as time went on, we transformed it into a beautiful house in the countryside.
Now it is a golden yellow house with a dark green trim, and the walls inside are painted in color. Outside our house, we have many gardens, including a vegetable garden, a dog pen with a doghouse that matches ours, two sheds (also matching), a sundeck, and a yard for sports.
I’m so appreciative of our house ” I truly love it! I’m proud of where I live, and I owe that to Habitat for Humanity. This is an amazing, life-saving program that I hope can help everyone in need.
Hannah Goulding, 13 years old
I was dismayed to read that the leader of the Roman Catholic Church thought that God was silent during the Holocaust/Shoah. I also visited Auschwitz museum as part of a high school choir trip to Poland and Russia in 1978. I don’t remember the plaques in many languages, but I vividly remember the photographs of dead and dying people, the ovens, and the rooms full of human hair, eyeglasses, and crutches. I was 16 years old.
The experience was traumatic. We held hands to pull ourselves through the museum and cried for the people who had been so mistreated. Even so, I don’t recall thinking that God was silent. If God had been silent, the Allies would not have won the war. If God had been silent, a form of government that systematically murdered its citizens would have won the conflict. God was not silent.
I give honor and thanks to those men and women who took action in World War II, allowing God to work through them. They rescued their fellow humans, worked to help support good government and to overthrow leadership that was not demonstrating God’s love to their citizenry.
Satan may have been very loud and active, but the God of love and kindness was more powerful. I know that God’s loving power will continue to be the dominant force in the world.
If I were not curious, after reading Heidi Rice’s Friday column and by making some assumptions, I would believe that yoga is about the pose and breathing deeply, ah, just like ingesting psilocybin mushrooms. Is it true that all we would ever need is a glass of wine and a smoke to relax? “Those people” who eat yogurt do not necessarily practice on the mat. Yogurt and yoga are both good for you.
Actually, this morning I mentioned to my class that if someone was to walk in and hear what I just said, “breathe!” he or she would mentally respond, “I already know how to breathe, this is not for me,” and leave. We all laughed. As practitioner, student and teacher of yoga, I would like to take you seriously and then, perhaps, speak for Mo, your mother, and those who take yoga seriously. Wrapping your ankles behind your ears can represent the pretzel-like positions one would aspire with a serious practice, but actually, this ancient tradition, practice and the writings espouse an emphasis on connecting the body with the mind by becoming familiar with our life’s source, the breath, and on flossing the mind of its constant chatter related to the past and the future. It is about being honest and kind at the same time.
I find that in this chaotic, time-frenzied world of ours the last thing with which we need to be fueling our minds is negative sarcasm and humor. Yoga is about becoming aware of what truly is, accepting it and staying afloat in the stream of things with an effort to develop a sense of well-being in our lives and to nurture harmony and peace with our fellow man. It is about compassion, about love, and about being kind. What the world needs now is love, awareness beyond the petty self and a direction to an inner truth. We are one, connected, in this world and we need to promote harmony to make it work. I appreciate your talent for writing, and I acknowledge that you do influence many readers. Perhaps, a sense of curiosity in your work would educate your followers, and I believe they would still enjoy your column. How about some positive thoughts, with no undermining, marriage, kids, work or spiritual beliefs?
Annig Agemian Raley
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Grace Wesseling is an animal lover, a cheerleader of seven years and another soon-to-be graduate of Bridges High School, class of 2021.