Rick Droog – Siouxland Diaconal Conference

Kurt & Emily Rietema’s stories of life and love in the Argentine neighborhood of Kansas City, Kansas, and in Croc, Mexico 

Before ye cast your first stone at me, admit it. You, dear reader, are not that different than I. At fundraiser brainstorming sessions, you give an honest attempt, hoping for something new, something novel and innovative. With populist ideals, you hope for the wisdom of the common man to rise up and shame the cynics. You hope for that one, moment of brilliance, like the humble offering of one small boy with a few fishes and loaves of bread, feeding the five thousand again and leaving behind twelve baskets overflowing with fistfuls of twenty dollar bills. But you can sense the suppressed bake sales and 25- cent lemonade stands gasping for air. You brace yourself for it like the frontman in a washed-up, cover band waiting for the drunk guy in the back to start yelling, “Freebird! Freeeebird!!!” Yet it comes just as inevitably. “I think we should do a car wash.” Let’s speak plainly for a moment. Car washes are dumb ideas. Most of us swear them off in fifth grade. And as much as I’ve wanted to put my learning into practice and embrace locals’ ideas and empower and support them in implementing them, my conceit won out. I couldn’t help but think that Mary’s suggestion of a car wash fundraiser for the Franklin Center was a dumb idea. Nate did some quick, careful redirecting that day, but months later, on August 20 there we were in the Franklin Center parking lot. Rain coming down. Washing cars.

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