TONIGHT WE LIGHT THE CANDLE for the fourth
night of Hanukkah. It is always so special to take out our menorahs
and light the candles. A picture of our daughter, Allie, now
18, shows her smiling a 9-month-old's enchantment with the dance
of the candle flames on her first Hanukkah. Since moving back
to California when Allie was 3, we have celebrated the Miracle
of Lights with my sister Casi and her family - we're blessed
to have them so nearby in Alamo. When Allie was 10, she and
I learned the Hebrew prayer of blessing for the candle-lighting
ceremony and every year since, we have sung it together each
night of Hanukkah.
This year is the first that we are planning holidays around
Allie's college schedule. Hanukkah comes early this year - it
started the night after Thanksgiving - so we were able to enjoy
both holidays with our family while she was home for the long
weekend. Thus, I was spared the major bout of "empty nest"
which would surely have befallen me if I'd had to sing that
blessing without my girl, though it may indeed strike tonight!
A FRIEND NEEDS OUR PRAYERS: Forgive me for indulging
in this personal reverie, but I have some difficult news to
share and wanted to put it in the perspective of counting our
blessings and remembering what is truly important in our lives.
Last month, the Little Brown Church of Sunol confirmed Ron Hunt
to return as its minister. He and his wife Lisa have been living
near Ron's family in Minnesota since leaving the Bay Area and
LBC a few years ago. When Pastor Tom Thresher moved to Washington
a few months ago, Ron and Lisa decided to come back to Sunol,
and it was happy news for all.
The week after his confirmation, Ron was diagnosed with acute
myelogenous leukemia. He has been hospitalized and undergoing
aggressive treatment since Nov. 2. He just finished his first
course of chemotherapy and his "stats" are improving.
Ron is a strong man, remarkably tough for one so tender, and
we are confident he can beat this. LBC is planning to wait however
long it takes for his return to health to welcome him back as
I thought those of you who hadn't heard would want to know,
and I also wanted to share that LBC, in the person of John Robertson,
has put a link at their web site to CaringBridge, a site that
provides an update and message service for people at Fairview
Medical Center. Lisa updates the page regularly with news of
Ron's progress, and you can write them a message of support.
You can access Ron's page at www.caringbridge.org/mn/ronhunt.
Cards and letters can be sent to: Ron Hunt, Room 7-513, PCU
7D, Fairview Medical Center, 420 Delaware St. S.E., Minneapolis,
MN 55455. Lisa says, "Thank you, thank you for your prayers."
We'll keep 'em coming, too.
BULLETIN BOARD BLUES: The other piece of news I want
to address is unpleasant indeed, but it needs an airing. Sunol
Glen School has been in the news recently because of a conflict
our district is having with the charter school it sponsors.
There have been a few heated board meetings, and there are complex
issues to resolve, but we have faith in our school board and
our superintendent to work through this.
Unfortunately, someone has posted numerous unsigned notes on
our community bulletin board, filled with name-calling, insults
and accusations against the leaders of our school district.
In the name of educating children, the "author" is
setting our youth a dreadful example. Why not make a call, schedule
an appointment, and address your concerns in a respectful and
mature manner? It saddens us when things like this happen, and
it is an insult to the Sunol Business Guild to put their generous
gift of the bulletin board kiosk to such a scurrilous use.
Perhaps Sunolians can keep an eye peeled for such notices and
take them down immediately - don't wait for someone else to
do it. And should your children see them, or neighbors remark
about them, please remind them that these are the actions of
one unhappy individual, and not a reflection of our wonderful