November 23, 2016

Members of Faith Lutheran welcome new pastor - By Lorraine Glowczak

The Faith Lutheran Church at 988 Roosevelt Trail in Windham welcomes their new Pastor, Rev. Jane Field. Officially installed as the congregation’s spiritual leader on November 6th, Rev. Field succeeds outgoing pastor, David Thorp who left Windham to begin a ministry training pastors in Bolivia.

The members of the search committee who recommended Rev. Field to the congregation are very pleased that she was called to be their next pastor. “She is a very kind, compassionate and thoughtful person and this comes through in her inspiring sermons,” Sarah Burkhardt, a member of the search committee, stated. “She has a lot of energy and enthusiasm” Burkhardt added, pleased that she fits so well within the personality and principles of the congregation.

“We love her,” Peggy Appelin, congregation member, spoke with delight about their new pastor. “She has become an immediate member of our church family. We have enveloped each other in all aspects of church life from services to lobster bakes, visiting members, cooking for fundraisers and emceeing our cabaret with warmth and humor,” Appelin continued. “Also, Rev. Field knows how to incorporate what is presently happening in the world today into her sermons so it is relatable to our authentic everyday life experiences. And she does so with a compassionate depth that inspires us.”

Initially, Rev. Jane Field did not set out to become a minister or anyone’s spiritual leader. Wanting to serve society through advocacy and politics, Field received her Master’s degree in Public Policy from Princeton University in 1987. During her participation in that program, she realized she was asking questions with a more human perspective that were not easily answered in the mathematics-focused curriculum. As part of her Master’s degree, she interned at a domestic violence agency in Trenton, New Jersey. Wanting to discover more about domestic abuse, she learned there was a class at Princeton Theological Seminary that focused on this very issue. Princeton Theological Seminary, a seminary associated with the Presbyterian Church, is not a part of Princeton University. However, the two institutions had a reciprocal agreement, so she took the class for credit. Here, Rev. Field discovered the more humanistic approach she had been looking for. So, after receiving her degree in Public Policy, she decided to add to her educational endeavors by pursuing a Master of Divinity degree from Union Theological Seminary in New York City.

After receiving her seminary degree, Field moved to Wilton, Connecticut, to serve first as the associate pastor of a Presbyterian Church, then as a Development Officer and Community Educator at a domestic violence agency in Stamford, Connecticut, before returning to the ministry, serving Presbyterian, Episcopal and Methodist churches in that area. During this time, she became a mother by adopting a beautiful girl from Guatemala. 

Fast forward to Faith Lutheran Church in Windham. Rev. Field has deep family roots in Maine and she knew it would eventually become her permanent home. While growing up, her family, who had a house in Sanford, split their time between Michigan where her father worked for General Motors, and Maine. Now, her parents are retired and live in Yarmouth and her daughter is a sophomore at the University of Maine at Orono. In the fall of 2015, Rev. Field moved to Portland and was hired as the executive director of the Maine Council of Churches, where she continues to serve. In July 2016, she accepted the call to serve as the part-time pastor of Faith Lutheran Church. 

“I stand in awe of this congregation,” Rev. Field stated in a recent interview. “They know how to be a church. In fact, they are teaching me more than I am teaching them,” Field continued. Her astonishment doesn’t end there. “This congregation knows how to put faith into action. They roll up their sleeves and get things done without help from me. This congregation is a welcoming and happy group that is self-sufficient and independent. In fact, all they need from me is a little spiritual nourishment. I feel very lucky to be a part of this church.”

Rev. Field also expressed how impressed she is with the active involvement and social justice ministry the church is participating in within the community. “We are very active in the Monday Meals, a free community dinner offered by a variety of churches on a weekly basis. There is always someone from the Faith Lutheran Church available every Monday to assist with this program.” Faith Lutheran is also involved in other outreach activities including adopting families in need at Thanksgiving and Christmas.

Not only is social justice ministry an important part of Faith Lutheran, but welcoming individuals from all walks of life is essential to their way of being church. This affirming congregation meets every Sunday at 9:30 a.m. During the summer months, an outside chapel that is an entrance to a nature preserve and hiking trail is where they meet, from June to September. 

Faith Lutheran is a member of the New England Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of America, a progressive mainline denomination. All are welcome to attend. To learn more or to become involved, contact Rev. Field at 207-892-9158.

David Hansen on the right - Music Director
David Young on the left - guitar player.

November 18, 2016

Student of the week - Sam Foley

The Windham Eagle’s student of the week is 10-year-old Sam Foley. Sam is in fourth grade and has Kelley Williamson as his teacher at Manchester School.

The person who has helped him the most with education is “Mrs. Williamson because she makes us learn by trying out new things to make us improve in all different subjects.

Learning fun comes from “doing things wrong, but then realizing that they are right or played a big part in learning how to do things right.”

One of his greatest accomplishments is being great a sports through a lot of practice. His free time is spent practicing spelling, going outside or practicing hockey.  

“Sam is an all around perfect representative of the 3 Bs.  He is friendly and hard working all day, every day.  He takes his education seriously.  He knows that learning is hard work and he is up for the challenge.  He is well liked and is a kind person to all.  I selected Sam for student of the week because of his effort, enjoyment,  and success in his fourth grade career,” said Williamson. 

Sam would like to go to USM and play hockey. 

Sam’s parents are Amy and Patrick Foley and he has a brother Jack. He also lives with Ellie, a pitbull mix, and Jonesy, a chocolate lab.

Favorite subject:  Gym          
Favorite movie: Daddy Daycare
Favorite holiday:  Christmas
Hobbies and extracurricular activities:  Hockey, baseball and soccer

Wage opportunities - By Rep. Mark Bryant the election behind us, it’s time to roll up our sleeves and continue the work of addressing
Maine’s challenges and helping our state live up to the ideal of “the way life should be.” We may have different opinions about what that should look like, but I know there are many things we can agree on. One of them is that everyone who works full-time should earn a decent wage – enough to keep the roof over their heads, pay their bills and put food on the table for their families, and maybe even have a little extra to set aside for retirement.

On Tuesday, Mainers voted to increase the minimum wage. There is work to do to ensure that this new law works for both employers and workers, but I am confident that this is a positive step for the people of Windham and for Maine’s economy overall. It means that people will have more money in their pockets to spend at local businesses and help boost the economy. And it means that people who contribute to the future of our state by going to work every day, from EMTs to firefighters, teachers and health care workers, will earn enough to get by. 

Another critical issue for the economic security of Maine families and the state’s overall economic health is equal pay for women. The equal pay law has been on the books for decades, but the reality is that women continue to earn less than men, about 78 cents for every dollar earned by men. Even when women and men are performing the same job functions, women tend to make less. pay gap begins early in women’s careers and can stay with them for their entire lifetime, even as they steadily rise up the career ladder. That’s why I’ve already submitted a bill for the upcoming session to help combat wage discrimination. The bill would prevent employers from demanding a job applicant’s salary history before making an offer of employment so that women’s compensation will be based on their qualifications. 

The practice of employers asking for previous salary information can perpetuate the pay gap by starting these employees off at lower wages they may have earned in the past. A new employee’s salary should be based on the value they bring to the company, not how much they earned in past jobs.

I believe that everyone who works hard should be given the opportunity to move ahead. Your first job should not dictate what you will be earning for the rest of your life. 

As a grandfather to three girls with a grandson on the way, I am determined to do everything I can to help ensure that each of their futures is full of possibilities and that they can do anything they set out to achieve. I am also determined to put the health of our economy here in Windham and throughout our state first. That means ensuring that all workers earn a living wage for the work they do. Then we will be a few steps closer to “the way life should be.”

Sen. King meets with WHS students - By Michelle Libby

Senator Angus King spoke to students in various history and world politics classes at Windham High School on Wednesday via Skype from Washington D.C. The hundred students in attendance listed respectfully as Senator King spoke about his job in the Senate and then answered questions from selected students. 

King told the students that his primary role was that of advocacy. He spends three or four days a week in Maine and the rest of the time in Washington D.C. working on his many committees like the Armed Services Committee or the Intelligence Committee to name a few. He said participating in hearings is his favorite part of the job. 

“I enjoy the chance to ask questions,” he told the students. He has 10 to 12 hour days, but feels that the issues he deals with are all important and challenging. 

“I’m delighted to have a chance to chat,” he told them. 

The first question asked was about health insurance. In each of his answers he spoke about the laws, the existing programs and what might happen with the new administration. “Not having health insurance is bad for your health,” he said. People will put off going to the doctors, having tests or getting treatment without insurance. 

He answered a question about our country’s debt. “Right now we are borrowing money to run the government already,” he said. Raising taxes or cutting taxes will come back on to the families. “It’s just going to make your life difficult 10 years down the road.” 

Throughout the question and answer session, King spoke to the class as adults. It was obvious they already understood many of the issues. 

“The depth of questions and level at which they’re paying attention has increased,” said King’s regional representative Travis Kennedy. “I’m very impressed.” 

King has been doing these talks to schools since he first took office as a senator. It was the first time that students at Windham High School were able to use technology to have a 1 on 1 conversation, remotely, with their senator. 

King has always been a supporter of technology, introducing laptops at the middle school level for each student while he was governor. Through technology, King is able to reach out to hundreds of students in between meetings and hearings on Capitol Hill. 

Other questions asked were about marijuana legalization, of which, King hopes that Maine will take lessons learned in Colorado and California to make it a smooth transition; Illegal immigration, where 97.5 percent of US citizens are descended from immigrants. He also stated that Maine needed people to come here to keep the economy going. We can’t build a wall around Maine and expect things to keep going, he said. He also noted that Americans won seven Nobel Prizes and six of the recipients were recent immigrants; One student asked about potential military conflicts. With China and Russia building up their militaries, King worries about an accident escalating into a war; How to prepare for a terrorist attack. There is a fine line between protecting our freedom, not turning into a police state, he told them; Gun control can be accomplished by using common sense; Minimum wage is okay as long as it is phased in and small business owners are watched out for; Drug testing for Welfare recipients is a hard one for King to answer, he said. “I’d like to hear arguments on both sides.”
Affirmative action and securing our borders were the final two questions. 

Social studies teacher Jeffrey Neal arranged the event. He has taken classes on field trips to see senators speak, but has never used technology to create a “FDR fireside chat” atmosphere, he said. The questions were determined by the students, he added. 

Students in the various classes will have the opportunity to discuss their experience with their fellow students and teachers.

American Legion Auxiliary donates socks to homeless veterans

The American Legion Auxiliary Unit 148 in Windham purchased and donated new socks to the Marine Corps League for their drive to collect socks and other warm items for homeless veterans and their families in Southern Maine. The ALA meets on the first Monday of the month at the Windham Veterans Center at 6 p.m. All women with a tie to a veteran are welcome to join.