United Presbyterian Home
Resident chaplain the Rev. Kitch Shatzer recently returned from her seventh mission trip to Fortaleza in northeast Brazil. Kitch and three companions traveled as part of the Presbytery of East Iowa to the farthest east point of Brazil where the church has formed a partnership with churches there. Since 1999 they have been building contacts and friendships with people in that area, and following the progress of their structural and training projects. Kitch is pleased to see the development of church buildings as well as nutrition programs and educational enrichment projects.
Fortaleza is a city of 3 million people of whom 80 percent are extremely poor. South of the Amazon and close to the equator means that the temperature stays at a constant 80-90 degrees year-around with dry heat and is of a terrain that allows for very little vegetation. Kitch said, “The people of the area are very resourceful and are able to create a living out of nothing.” They will make use of everything they have and then recycle and create new uses for many items again. The best marketable item in the area is the cashew. The cashew nut is actually an accessory fruit of the cashew apple which grows on trees. The cashew apple is a yellow or red pear-shaped fruit that produces a sweet juice but has a skin that is too fragile for shipping. The seed that grows at the bottom of the cashew apple in a shell is the cashew nut.
Kitch also enjoys following the progress of the Fortaleza cooperative education program which began in a church to supplement the half-day school system. Students help teach other students for a broader education and to hopefully enter a university. Twenty years ago the program began with a mere seven students and now over 500 students have entered a university, many receiving diplomas in graduate studies.
Kitch knows enough Portuguese to communicate and says that a highlight of her trip is being welcomed into homes of residents to share a meal of rice, beans and cheese and spend the night. She attends church with them, Bible study and leadership groups. This trip she was able to attend 10 churches. On a trip several years ago she was asked to help preside over the baptism of 14 people at one ceremony, an opportunity that she will always remember. She will certainly remain in communication with her friends in Fortaleza and plans to return in future years.
Bob and Pam Krotz and Marilyn Corbett from Gig Harbor, Wash., spent the weekend on the United Presbyterian Home campus visiting Wayne and Nadene Brown. On Saturday, the cousins attended the funeral of Delores Griffith and later checked out the new high school complex. They all graduated from Washington High School, so they were anxious to view the facility and also the Washington Public Library. They were very impressed with the campus and surprised to know there were so many cottages. They returned to Washington state on Sunday.
Dave Henderson celebrated his birthday on Monday by treating the morning coffee group to birthday cake. To Dave’s surprise his friends provided a little help in decorating the cake to make it personal. Dave is known for being a fisherman and so the cake displayed a fisherman with an itty-bitty fish on his fishing pole. The quote said, “Old fishermen never die, they just smell that way.” Dave certainly has some nice friends.
Health Center residents were busy on Tuesday working up the three buckets of apples that Richard and Del Henningfield brought over to share. They have made applesauce and two pies so far. Tuesday is also movie and popcorn day, so the building smelled wonderful.
The annual melon feed was held on Wednesday in the parking lot in front of the Brownlee Health Center. Residents and staff were treated to fresh watermelon and muskmelon. Carol Enfield and Elizabeth Tschantz must have planned the event for the hottest day in August when the temperatures are just right for a good old-fashioned watermelon feed. Plenty of people lined up to eat outside in the parking lot and just as many took advantage of the air conditioning to eat their melon inside.
Classics Et Cetera for Aug. 22 included an overture to “South Pacific” by Richard Rodgers; Introduction, Theme & Variations for Clarinet & String Quartet by Carl Maria von Weber; “Water Music” from Incidental Music to “Henry VIII” by Sir Arthur Sullivan; “Liebesfreud” by Fritz Kreisler; “Smeary Ike” by F.H. Losey; Finale of Symphony No. 5 by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky; “Galop” from “The Comedians” by Dmitri Kabalevsky.
There were other eminent violinists in the first half of the 20th century, but the most beloved was probably Fritz Kreisler (1875-1962). Kreisler left the Paris Conservatory when he was 12 thinking there was nothing more it could teach him. Please excuse him for that — he had won the school's first prize and was enjoying his concert tour around Europe. He practiced very little throughout his career, much to the consternation of the world’s teachers. But natural talent won out and he was one of the world’s greatest violin virtuosos, practice or no.