Archive for March, 2012

In memory of my brother Merle

March 16, 2012

I got a call 10 days ago that my brother Merle at age 61 had about 3 days to live. He has had bladder cancer for several years and seemed to be doing pretty well the last time I saw him.

Two of my brothers went to his side. Thankfully there is a Veterans hospital and hospice unit near where he lived and he got good care and kindness at this point in his life. My three brothers had some good times visiting. Merle seemed a bit better.

But more importantly Merle accepted Christ as his savior! I have been praying for Merle for years and this is a wonderful answer to many prayers for his soul.

Merle passed away yesterday morning.

A little background, we were 10 children and Merle is the 7th child, but the 6th boy. I came three years later. He was very intelligent and did well when he put his mind to something.

Merle is the first child on the left side. I am the only girl. Taken in 1961 when our family lived in a one room school house due to a fire that took our entire house and furnishing.

Here is our family right after we moved into the old school house. We were grateful to have a place to live but the grief from our losses is on most of the older children faces and our parents of course. Our sister had married and therefore wasn’t in this picture. People in the community had given us many things to help our family and me a new doll after we lost everything in the fire. I am hugging him.

Merle was drafted into the Army and he went to Fort Benning, Georgia for basic training and I remember attending the graduation. He went into the 92nd Airborne division and we were all real proud of him. He went on to serve in VietNam.

I remember one special memory…he really attracted to this girl. He wanted to impress her…so he asked our mom to help him learn to sew, so he could make his girlfriend a dress. Now he was anything but a tough guy but he wanted to show a special kindness and love to the girl. I don’t think she really appreciated it…but I remembered and thought how sweet and romantic it was.

A picture taken of our family in 1988 right after Kent and I came home form Brazil for our missionary furlough. Merle is the last one on the right in the back row. He isn’t looking at the camera.

Merle had many things that bothered him and now I know he is at peace and in God’s arms. I am so glad that he was willing to admit his need for God.

As you read this, I am on my way to his funeral. I will be with the rest of my family and pray that I can be the testimony that I can be.

Jan for the Roaming Reimers

Visit to Tucson

March 1, 2012

We went to Tucson this past weekend. Kent needed to visit with some pastors and we also had some supporters in the area we needed to see. We drove our RV house there on Thursday afternoon. We got to cook outside over a fire for the evening meal. Actually Kent did that cooking. He loves cooking when we do it outside. It was a delicious mixed vegetables and sausage meal. We invited our friends over for it. Yum!

Then Friday Kent took off early and Daylene and her mom Edna picked me up. We first went to a craft sale at a nearby RV park. I met some of their friends there. Then we three went to see the local Catholic Historical Mission.

The name is San Xavier mission and was founded about the time our country was being born. These priests must have done a good job as the Indian population seems to have many of them converted. Even the graveyard looked more Catholic than Indian. Anyway, the Tohono O’odham Indian nation now owns,runs and restored the mission buildings. The buildings are beautiful. the carvings and art inside the church are so wonderfully restored. It was fun to look at a 30 minute video of the work and understand more about it. the restoration is an ongoing project.

We took pictures as you could around the mission. And you can see that there is one dome missing. It was hit by lightning and burnt and has not been replaced.

San Xavier Mission in Tucson

Info about the mission
Info on San Xavier Mission

Inside the church was very ornate with much symbolism in each carving.
Inside the church at San Xavier

Beautiful cross at the mission

Pretty cross at San Xavier

The mission is on a high point on the desert so can be seen for miles around. It said that was to allow the Indians to see the mission from afar.

San Xavier Mission

This is the largest barrel cactus that I have ever seen. Almost as tall as me. Wow! It was on the San Xavier Mission grounds.

Large barrel cactus

This is a great mission to visit. You can see I enjoyed it.

On Saturday we got to see our friend Mike shoot for a clay pigeon shoot off. There were tons of people there…I think hundreds. there were shooters as young as about 12 and every age to retirement. There were many who were there to watch the shooters too. Mike has done this for years and has always told us about it. Since we had to go for others reasons too we decided to go on the time we could see Mike shoot.

Looking down the line of shooters. There was almost a mile of shooters there.

Mike at the shoot

Mike’s group at this time of the shoot

Mike and his shooters

Mike shooting..can you see the tiny little orange thing in the middle of the picture?..That is the clay pigeon they are shooting.

Mike shooting  and the clay pigeon

Waiting for his turn to shoot

Kent, Daylene and Edna sitting in the shade

Spectators sitting in the shade

We had a fun day with them in between his shooting and also watching the shooting. We came back to Phoenix on Monday morning and are back to our normal schedule.

Love Jan for the Roaming Reimers