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DOUBLE FANFARE FOR PRESBYTERIANS IN BROOKINGS

Pastor Warren Muller, after constantly asking for cookies, was presented with a giant cookie at church's 50th birthday celebration Saturday. ().
Pastor Warren Muller, after constantly asking for cookies, was presented with a giant cookie at church's 50th birthday celebration Saturday. ().

The weekend of April 16 and 17 was a busy one for members and friends of the Brookings Presbyterian Church.

It included a celebratory dinner on Saturday evening to sing "Happy Birthday" for the church's 50-year presence in the community, and a dedication ceremony on Sunday for the newly-remodeled sanctuary, entry, offices, classrooms, kitchen and recreation hall.

Rev. Dr. Warren Muller introduced birthday celebration guests including Rev. Dr. Hugh Anderson, who is the co-executive presbyter at the South Office of the Presbytery of the Cascades, and his wife Teena.

Other special birthday guests included Rev. John Lacy, who served as pastor of the Brookings church from 1971 to 1981, and his wife Kathy, and Rev. Dr. John Salmon, who was interim pastor prior to the arrival of Muller and his wife Kathleen in 1999, and his wife Jane.

Muller also introduced Dave Kitchen, who was the contractor for the extensive remodel, and his wife, Marci.

Hattie the Rainbow Clown took over for the introductions and presentations, recognizing remodel organizers Lee Garvin, Bob Faires and Buzz Hansen. Hansen served as engineer on the project, Faires was the overseer, and Garvin was the lead fundraiser who was quoted by Hattie as repeatedly reminding everyone about "the costs."

Dr. Muller introduced Marian Lamm, the only remaining charter member of the church, and quoted from a letter from former pastor, Rev. Hendrik Wapstra, who, with his wife Rosa Lee, served the Brookings church in the late 1960s. Guests applauded when Wapstra's quote was read: "Marian Lamm, a Rock of Gibraltar, level headed, big hearted, supportive of new ideas and a deep love for God and the people around her."

Other longtime members announced included Mable Struebin Easton, Pat Collier, Bernadine and Frank Kelley, Betty Waite, Robert and Shirley Earle, Sue Ross, Claude and Bonnie Morin, Vern and Dorothy Garvin, Martha Boak, Don and Dorothy Harroun, Nancy Nidiffer, Don Harroun Jr., Patricia and Charles Anderson, and Rayburn and Jean Erwin.

Bernadine and Frank Kelley, who were also celebrating a 50th wedding anniversary, were presented with an anniversary cake.

Muller proved himself a brave man when he also noted the years of hard work and strong support to the church by Lynn Sunblad and Mary Matlock, in spite, he said, of being threatened with dire consequences by the two women if he mentioned their names.

Matlock and the choir she directs closed the celebration with a walk down memory lane, singing hymns from the past 50 years.

Sunday was a joyful morning for members and friends of the Brookings Presbyterian Church when six ordained ministers shared in the dedication ceremony of the new sanctuary and building.

The church pastor, Rev. Dr. Warren Muller welcomed worshippers. Following the call to worship led by Elder Dr. Jim Nelson, Rev. John Lacy, former pastor from 1971 to 1981, led the prayer of adoration.

The dedication ceremony began with the baptismal font dedication led by Rev. Dr. Hugh Anderson representing the Presbytery of the Cascades.

Rev. Dr. John Salmon, former interim pastor of the church, led the dedication of the pulpit and Rev. Dr. Tom Teply, retired pastor from Gold Beach, led the dedication prayer for the pulpit Bible. The table dedication was led by Lacy, and Muller led the sanctuary and building dedication.

Following the choir's presentation of "One Spirit, One Church," the congregation sang "The Word" as a prayer of illumination.

Retired Air Force Chaplain Rev. John Smart read Psalm 127:1-2, and Teply presented the gospel reading, Matt. 7:24-29.

Salmon preached the sermon, "Building on a Rock," reminding the members that the church is not really the building, but the people. He asked, "What are you going to do now," and suggested that they enjoy the new facilities but, even more importantly, reach out into the world to serve and proclaim the love of Christ.

"We live out our faith in the world around us, in service to others in Christ," Salmon said.

Nelson led the dedication of the people and the affirmation of faith, followed by songs of praise and the sacrament of the Lord's supper.

The congregation sang, "Alleluia! For the Lord, our God, the Almighty, Has come into the kingdom! Let us rejoice, let us be glad with all our hearts. Let us give God the glory forever and ever. Amen."

A special lavender cake baked by Arlene Will was served with coffee, tea, and conversation in the fellowship hall following the dedication.

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