Several of us, women, were sitting around a picnic table at the lake, talking about some of our needs. We were all in our sixties and some in their fifties. We had just enjoyed a fabulous pig roast! So we were full and ready to just sit and visit. “What do you think about a newsletter for our age group?” someone asked. “That way we could keep informed about each other!” Well, it sounded like a good idea. But who would write it…who would have time to write it? My friend, Joan, suddenly stood up, pointed her finger at me and said, “Anita, you should be the one to write it!”
“What?” I was sort of in shock! I was also flattered! I love to write, but I’d never thought of writing a newsletter! I didn’t even know how!
I was up all night, that night, composing my first newsletter! I typed and deleted, typed and deleted…Finally, I was sort of happy with it! I finished in time to print it out and then took it to our church that morning to show Joan. She was surprised and happy! I had written about the pig roast and posted pictures as the main feature. I had a section of prayer requests. I included some scripture. There were announcements of upcoming events. “Yes, that’s it!” she exclaimed! “I knew you could do it!”
That was in September of 2007. I’ve been writing the newsletter, every other week, ever since! Prime Time News is the name of it. It’s a publication for folks 50 years and older. The feature folks seem to like best is one I call, Getting to Know You… I interview folks about their lives and then write-up their life story. I took the title from the old song, “Getting to know you, getting to know all about you…”
My good friend, Joan Schloemann, is now supervising my work from her home in heaven. She died a couple of years ago while waiting for a new liver. I miss her so…
But the newsletter goes on. Here are some interesting statistics: It’s bi-weekly; 45 copies are printed; 65 copies are e-mailed; eight copies are snail-mailed to shut-in folks!
More statistics: 61 couples and/or singles have been interviewed and featured in Getting To Know You… Of those nine folks have died; eight have moved away; seven have transferred to other churches in our town; two couples are now divorced and have moved on.
Besides the Getting To Know You…feature, there are other important events featured. Page two is reserved for prayer requests and praises. Also on age two is a feature called The Beauty of God’s Creation… Nature photos taken by my photographer friend, Harold Klassen, is a feature everyone loves. There are notices, such as deaths, births and graduations of grandchildren and others; our three pastors rotate writing a column: A Word From Pastor… Other important and interesting news items are featured such as birthdays and anniversaries. And actually…lots more!
My older brother, Richard Williamson, a writer, has helped me immensely with the newsletter. It wouldn’t be what it is today without his help! A friend, Wilma Kasten, is the proofreader.
So now you know what keeps me busy! Once in a while I get some feedback. The most common feedback is when I’ve made a mistake or when someone doesn’t like what I’ve written! But once in a while I get a good comment about how much the newsletter is appreciated!
Jerry and I both feel this is work the Lord has given to me. It came out of the blue and it came when I wasn’t doing other work, such as teaching a class or other time-consuming work. Jerry is my biggest supporter and advisor!