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Today's Features

  • I wish you a new start filled with positivity tomorrow, as we head back to school. It begins a new chapter in many ways and hopefully we will encourage our children to take charge in writing their story.

    I look ahead to a new year of building Assets, helping community members to see the importance of building them each and every day, with the smallest of efforts. Since there are 40, the work is easy.

    The relationships we have throughout our lives, even into adulthood is what encourages us to want to learn, to keep on learning and to find the spark that lights the passion within each of us.

    It doesn’t matter what brings you passion, this year try and put it into play. It may come in a form you never considered or require that your life changes completely in order to fuel the desire to achieve it.

    I am elated that once again the Los Alamos County Council will proclaim the month of September “Assets Month,” with the goal of building Assets throughout the year.

  • The Los Alamos Juvenile Justice Advisory Board (JJAB) Family Resource Specialists and Mesa Public Library children’s librarians will host a community playdate for children ages newborn to 5-years-old.

    This drop-in event will be from 10:10 a.m.-1 p.m. Aug. 29 in the Youth Services rooms at Mesa Public Library, 2400 Central Avenue.

    The community playdate is to kick-off two early childhood literacy programs – Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library and 1000 Books Before Kindergarten.

    In addition to offering the opportunity to sign up for the literacy programs, this event will also feature play, movement, music and art activities for the children, and social time for adults.

    Snacks will be provided.

    Other local agencies participating in the community playdate include: Family Strengths Network, First Born Program of Los Alamos, PEEC Nature Center, the Many Mothers’ Baby Boxes program. The event is free.

  • By The Pajarito Conservation Allaince

  • At sundown on July 31, Jews around the world observed Tisha B’av, the most somber of Jewish holidays. It commemorates the destruction of the two temples in Jerusalem, first by the Babylonians and then, almost seven centuries later, in A.D. 70, by the Romans.

    Jews will remember these two historic calamities along with many others, including their slaughter during the First Crusade; the expulsions from England, France and Spain; and the Holocaust.The pattern of forced migration was set by the Babylonian conquest of 587-586 B.C., when the elite of Judah were marched to Babylon and the temple destroyed.

    Like the story of Moses and the Exodus from Egypt, which happened several centuries earlier, the Babylonian exile dwells at the heart of Judaism. The trauma served as a crucible, forcing the Israelites to rethink their relationship to Yahweh, reassess their standing as a chosen people and rewrite their history.

    Psalm 137, the subject of my most recent book, “Song of Exile,” is a 2,500-year-old Hebrew poem that deals with the exile that will be remembered on Tisha B’av. It has long served as an uplifting historical analogy for a variety of oppressed and subjugated groups, including African-Americans.

    Origins of the psalm

  • Visitors and locals driving up NM 475 (the road to the Santa Fe Ski Basin) may notice something happening with aspen groves that create one of the most popular vistas on the Santa Fe National Forest.

    To the casual observer, the aspens may appear to be dying. But those bare branches signal the return of the western tent caterpillars, native defoliators whose larvae feed on a variety of hardwood trees species. At least here in New Mexico, they seem to be particularly fond of aspen.

    The caterpillar gets its name from the conspicuous “tent” it builds on branches and twigs. The silken shelter protects the larvae during molting. As they mature, the larvae disperse and continue feeding on leaves until it’s time to retreat into cocoons for their transformation into moths. The process takes a couple months after which the adults mate and the female moths lay the eggs that become next year’s caterpillars.

  • Want to learn more about the Hubble Telescope and the Universe? Come to the Los Alamos Nature Center Planetarium for a presentation on one of NASA’s most ambitious experiments at 7 p.m. Sept. 15 . The full-dome planetarium film Exploding Universe will play at 2 p.m. Sept. 16 and 17.

    On Sept. 15, the show will begin with a screening of NOVA: Invisible Universe Revealed, which will be followed by a talk by Dr. Rick Wallace. The film and presentation will share the astronomical significance of the Hubble Space Telescope findings, including cosmic expansion and supermassive black holes.

    Exploding Universe, showing at 2 p.m. Sept. 16 and 17, uncovers cosmic events that shaped the Universe. This full-dome film explores a world where supernovas erupt, massive materials collide, and protons give birth to life as we know it. For more information about these and future planetarium shows, visit peecnature.org/planetarium. For tickets, call 662-0460.
     

  • White Rock Baptist Church said farewell to Pastor Chuck McCullough on Sept. 10 with an ice-cream social.
    Pastor Chuck, as he was called fondly by members of the congregation, had been senior pastor at White Rock Baptist Church since July 1, 1986.

    McCullough said he felt God had been leading him to leave the church because that is what is best for the church. He had been pastor of White Rock Baptist Church for 31 years. The church has flourished under his leadership, but he said he was excited about where God will lead the church in the future.

    White Rock Baptist was started in 1969 as a mission outreach from First Baptist Church in Los Alamos.

    In 1970, the new church bought property along State Road 4, and in 1972 the first church building was completed on the property. A second building was completed in 1978. In August 1997, a sewer backup in a county line caused a major flood in the building on Sunday morning.

    The old building had to be decontaminated.

  • In 1987 Ronald Reagan was in his last year as president of the United States, the Minnesota Twins won the World Series, and a gallon of gasoline cost 89 cents.

    In August of that year, Timothy D. Stidham and his wife Tanya, moved with their four children to Los Alamos from Sherman, Texas. And so began what would be 30 years of service to the Los Alamos Church of Christ. Thirty years and counting.

    The church will honor the Stidhams with a banquet at Fuller Lodge on Monday. Besides the meal, present and former church members will share memories and the Stidhams’ son Tony will present a commemorative slide show. In appreciation for their longtime service, the church is also sending the Stidhams on a Caribbean cruise.

    Tim began at the church as youth minister and served in that capacity for five years. In 1992 he became pulpit minister and has worked in that capacity ever since. Tanya has served as women’s minister since 2000. Their second son Tony is currently youth minister for the church, a position he has held since August, 2011.

    The couple met in Guam when their fathers were stationed there in the military. They have been married 43 years.

  • The White Rock United Methodist Church is working with other local churches to host a fundraiser to help support a local family, the Blakes, with their missionary work in Niger. Sean and Carrie Blake and their children are long-term, cross-cultural Christian missionaries with SIM.

    The family lives and works in Niger, West Africa. Carrie serves as Midwifery Tutor and is particularly involved in developing curriculum for a government-approved midwifery and nursing school. Sean serves as the SIM Projects Coordinator and general IT Administrator.

    The Blakes are responsible for raising the funds necessary to enable them to continue living and working in Niger.

    Several churches in the Los Alamos area stand behind the Blake family in prayer and the White Rock United Methodist and White Rock Baptist churches are their official sending churches.

    To help support them, the WRUMC is holding a garage sale starting at 9 a.m. Saturday, in support of the Blakes’ work in Niger.

    All proceeds from the sale will be donated to their SIM support account (simusa.org/give  Missionary # 029349). Come by 580 Meadow Lane on Saturday and support a great cause at the same time.

  • In this 500th anniversary year of the Reformation, members of the community are invited to participate in a seven-session class called “By Heart: Conversations with Martin Luther’s Small Catechism,” offered by Bethlehem Evangelical Lutheran Church.

    Using video, discussion and the book of the same name, Pastor Russ Sorensen will lead participants in exploring the biblical and historical context of Luther’s Small Catechism, the concise and accessible teaching guide he wrote for use in the family home. Luther left a rich and complex legacy through his life’s work, founded on his affirmation of the doctrine of justification “by grace alone, through faith alone, according to scripture alone.” In the 16th century, his church promoted new ideas and practices that many Christians take for granted today, including worship and scripture in the language of the common people, congregational hymn-singing, and the vocation of lay people in service to God.

    While the course is centered on Lutheran theology and spirituality, it is hoped that participants of all faith traditions will gain a greater understanding of Reformation history and of the many points of unity between Lutherans and other Christians.