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Minister to the rescue

Thursday, October 22nd, 2009

Two men are stranded on a remote, deserted island.

The one man says, “We’re doomed. No one will ever find us. We’ll die here.”

The other man, very rich and a billionaire, who donates millions to his church said, “No, no. We’ll be out of here in ten days for sure. Trust me.”

“How can you possibly know that,” says the other man.

“Each month I give a $100,000 check to my minister for our church,” said the rich man.

“But what’s that got to do with finding us?” said the other man.

“My minister’s due to pick up my check in 10 days.”

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Riding JFK’s Catholic coattails

Wednesday, September 23rd, 2009

WANAMINGO, MINN – As a kid growing up near Wanamingo, Minnesota, I looked upon my Lutheran friends with envy. They seemed rich and popular. The religious ‘in crowd’ in which anyone who was anybody belonged.

I on the other hand, through unlucky fate, or so I thought at the time, was born and baptized a Catholic. There weren’t many of us in the little village of about 400. I can count the families I knew on one hand: The Otto’s, the Swarthout’s, and the Gombert’s.

We didn’t even have a Catholic church to call our own in Wanamingo. Mom packed us up early on Sunday mornings for our drive to Zumbrota and St. Paul’s Catholic Church where just a hand full worshipped from the two villages and surrounding countryside.

But Lutheran churches popped up everywhere. Wanamingo had three – Aspelund, Trinity, and Wanamingo Lutheran. And there are ten – count them ten – Lutheran churches in and around Zumbrota, Wanamingo, and Kenyon. All within 20 to 30 miles of each other.

Lutherans dominated the religious landscape. We Catholics were out numbered. How did a lowly Catholic boy stand a chance?

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