A Sad Christmas Memory

I was so blessed this morning as Jose’ showed up to show me photos of the latest church we have built. With him was a girl who was born with brain damage; never walked until age 9 and was not allowed to go to school until age 10. Her mom died. Her father is alcoholic. She has finished junior high and wants to live here & go to high school. She is crippled on her left side but is just a wonderful young lady.

We began to enroll the university students for the upcoming semester. Teams from Troy, Alabama & Maryland are here.


One dorm-one load of dirty clothes-how would you like to do our laundry?
One dorm-one load of dirty clothes-how would you like to do our laundry?



Memories seem to be more profound during the holiday season. Although I have multiple times more good memories there is one negative memory that haunts me and has done so for over 50 years. Five decades ago my father was usffering from advanced diabetes. Oh, how I loved my Dad!

The doctors told hom by amputating his legs he would extend his life significantly. He refused saying he would rather die that be ‘half  man’. The physicians and my mother tried everything to get him to agree to at least change his life style. Although the dietetic food in those days was horrible he was told by eating a strict diet and especially no more alcohol he would be able to live not only healthier but more normally.

He ws stubborn which I am sure does not surprise any of you who know me as I am much like my Dad. Once when we were eating Sunday dinner my mother brought out a cake as it was my brother’s birthday. My Dad was angry when he did not get any and angrily told my mother to cut a BIG piece of cake and then he went to the refrigerator and for TWO beers.

I quietly leaned to my Dad and said ‘The doctors said you would live longer if you did not eat sweets and did not drink beer”. He snapped at me “IF I CANNOT EAT MY SWEETS AND DRINK MY BEER THEN I AM NOT LIVING ANYWAY”.

I was hurt to the bone and honestly still am pained by his words. Beer and sweets were more important to him than living with me, my sisters and our family. When he died I was so angry that he chose the way he did rather than choose us.

New Year’s is a day of promise