I wonder what the Pilgrims were thinking on September 6, 1620, when they left Plymouth, England for the New World. I'm certain it wasn't because April showers bring Mayflowers or that they heard the seafood was really good in Jamestown. They came to America looking for both civil and religious liberty, and the voyage took over two months. I was once told that Thanksgiving is great because people tend to speak less when food is lodged in their mouths...While the food is definitely an enjoyable part of the tradition, the underlying meaning behind this holiday is that we find strength and hope in unity of a common purpose.
It is a great time to reconcile differences and express gratitude for what we have in our lives. The members of our Club have different backgrounds, religious preferences, and political views, but as Rotarians are all called to follow the Four Way Test and offer Service Above Self regardless of our various perspectives. In my opinion, it is these differing perspectives coming together that make this organization, (and America), great.
We welcome the additions of Raymond Soto and Andy Bishop to our Club! We also have two more applications recently submitted and another to follow so I thank you for 'paying it forward'!
This month we only have 3 meetings due to Thanksgiving but a wonderful month of programs, starting with Tony Award-winning orchestrator and Music Supervisor of the Broadway play Movin' Out, Stuart Malina from the Harrisburg Symphony. I'm told he will be doing something special for us. That same day, on the 5th, we will have a special visitor to our Club. Sudesh Walia, Past President of the Rotary Club of Nairobi, will be here. Bill Blankmeyer and Kathleen Stoup have prepared an itinerary to show her around Carlisle and planned a Happy Hour at Rillo's for all of us to enjoy that evening!
We have Lt. Col Lalor on the 12th, and our very own Kathleen Stoup will be updating us on the Kenya project the following week.
I'm glad to see many of you signed up for the Rotary Leadership Institute on the 14th, and don't forget about the Foundation dinner on the 19th if you are interested.
In the spirit of Thanksgiving, I appreciate all that you do for the community, locally and globally, with special gratitude to the sacrifice of our veterans that protect our freedom as it is definitely not free. I wish you all a wonderful month!
Service Above Self,
Jim DeGaetano, Jr.