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Sometimes it feels like you should just go into your room and close the door! So much is happening around the world and the country, it’s hard to see hope ahead. One of the phrases used often during the pandemic was “There is light at the end of the tunnel”. Trouble was, the tunnel kept getting longer and longer and for a very long time, the light didn’t get any brighter.

When finally it looked like things were brightening, and many were rejoicing mandates were coming off, along comes another problem. The pandemic was a worldwide disaster but this new situation also has the potential to significantly alter the world, directly or indirectly as Russia, and specifically, Putin, invade a sovereign nation, using the threat of nuclear war.

And if you read the newspapers you will also learn there are smaller wars, but no less significant, in many other parts of the world. People are starving, being forced to work as slave labour, sexually trafficked and deprived of their human rights. And the list goes on.

What can we do? Well, for the pandemic, encourage governments to make vaccines available to all those countries where scarcely anyone has had a shot. Continue safety measures for yourself knowing there are still many vulnerable people around and the virus has not gone away.

For the others, sign petitions for things that concern you, health, environment etc., and give money to reputable agencies. You may think you don’t have much but you have far more than most people in many countries and your homes are not under siege and those around you are not being killed.

This morning our church service was held in Zephyr as the furnace at Sandford wasn’t cooperating. There was a good turnout with everyone happy to see one another after a two-month hiatus. Carol O’Neil conducted the service with Ruth Baker at the piano. Remember the Official Board meeting at Sandford United Church is on Tuesday night at 7 p.m. The Annual General Meeting (AGM) for the charge will be after the service on Sunday, March 27th. Rev. Paul Reed will conduct both gatherings.

Happy birthday, wishes go out to Gwen Layton. Gwen keeps very busy selling real estate, working with the Lucy Maud Montgomery Society (LMMS) in their many endeavours, and with the Uxbridge Legion and Chances Are.

Another busy and well-known person with a birthday was John Cavers whose photographs are always a super delight. Dan Moore also celebrated his birthday. Since his wife had one, only a few days ago too, maybe they celebrated together; they work together in so many other things. Another gentleman who had a birthday party was Ken Maynard. Ken has had a great career as a fireman. Another of those I knew as a young boy and look where he is now!

Congratulations to Betty Webster-Catherwood on her retirement. I knew Betty mostly from her 30 years working at St. Johns as a nurse (I was only there 25). She did a super job there as she did wherever she worked. She was also involved in our Red Cross organization when we had our own group in town. For the last 30 years, she was very involved in the Loaves and Fishes and they will be hard-pressed to replace her. Enjoy your free time Betty but I bet she won’t be sitting around!

Last week I neglected to mention the passing of Donald Dunkeld. Don was a well-known farmer in the area, particularly when it came to ploughing. Our sympathies to all his family! Our deepest sympathies go to Cathy (Menar) Ellig in the passing of her husband Ed. Cathy, with her siblings and parents Ken and Ola lived in Sandford for many years and when she and Ed married they continued to live there. He will be greatly missed but had suffered from multiple health problems for some time.

Our prayers and best wishes for better health go out to Bruce Harwood who is not recuperating as well as hoped. Others in our communities also need prayers and best wishes.

There was an interesting webinar the other night when Nature Canada bestowed the Pimlott Award to Graeme Gibson (posthumously) and Margaret Atwood for their over 50 years of defending nature. Guests included the Lt. Gov. of Ontario Elizabeth Dowswell, Jann Arden, Meashe Brueggergosman, Adrian Clarkson, and Buffy Sainte Marie.

From Margaret: “Words inspired by the garden are the sweetest, most beautiful words of all. In the spring, at the end of the day, you should smell like dirt.”

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