For the third week in a row now, I've dragged the ugly trash bin, which the city so graciously dumped in our driveway, to the curb. They have asked us to keep them clean … ours still had sand in it, from where they stored them. It will remain that way.

Dr. Philip O. Dahl's assessment (April 16) of this fabulous gift was right on!

Looking north and south on our street, these unsightly sentinels stand straight and tall, waiting for their owners to drag them back toward wherever they can stash them out of sight. But where? It sure doesn't fit in our garage. It is an eyesore next to the front steps, and neither my husband nor I want the inconvenience of dragging it to the curb from under the deck in the back yard.

Although it isn't that heavy (when empty), moving it is a no-no for my husband, who just had quadruple bypass surgery, and a chore for me, with two joint replacements and some arthritis.

The city seems to be defeating its purpose by having a second truck follow the first one to pick up the stuff the first one won't take.

You know, I just might spray paint the darned thing and paint flowers or a scene on it … "City Fair - Because We Care." These cans don't beautify anything if they have to be left in plain sight the way they are.

The only thing the city has done that was constructive, was put the snow gates on the graders for the driveways. I thank you for that.

Better than the alternative


The Catholic Church, Christianity and organized religion, in general, have taken a major hit in recent weeks. It would be hard to imagine a more grievous sin than a crime committed against a child. I am saddened not only for the tender lives that have been scarred, but for the damage against the church in general.

Many times I have heard someone say, "My faith is a personal thing, I don't have to attend a church to be a Christian." "I can find God at home or in the outdoors." Or the most common, "The church is full of hypocrites." All three of these statements are true and nowhere in the scriptures is it written that church membership is a requirement for entering into heaven.

If we as a people were to say that the school system is flawed, and we stopped sending our children, how long would it take until we became a nation of illiterates? If we disagree with the bureaucratic way that the military is run, shall we disband our armed forces? What movement, revolution, government, charity, has ever amounted to anything without organizing?

If any person is serious about furthering the Kingdom of God, he knows that he needs to be part of something that is bigger than himself. If we do not respect the Sabbath and the assembling of ourselves together, our children will not, and their children will certainly not. Christianity will be as vague as the memories and stories handed down to us about our great-grandparents. Without knowledge of God, where will our descendants be?

One day we will all stand at the judgment and give an account of what we have done in our lives. I expect that the Lord will ask, "What have you done for the Kingdom of God?"

Many will say, "Well, I didn't attend church or do much of anything because it was all so much hypocrisy."

Don't be surprised if you hear the master say something like, "I know about the hypocrites and they have their reward, but the question was, what have you done to promote my Kingdom?"

Now is not the time, nor will it ever be the right time for us to turn our back on the church. For our own good, and for the benefit of generations to come, I urge you and your family to attend. There is no perfect church. You will not be happy with everything that happens there. It may not be the same church that you or your parents have attended for generations, but it will be far better than the alternative.

"For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved, it is the power of God." I Corinthians 1:18.

Invigorating columns


I was saddened to hear Steve Cates will no longer be a contributing writer. I shall miss Cates' invigorating columns.

Thank you Steve for your willingness to articulate so clearly the issues that confront our community, state and nation. I trust you will find another public source to share your views.