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Valley News and Views
Drayton , North Dakota
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April 25, 2013     Valley News and Views
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April 25, 2013
 

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Page 2 April 25th, 2013 and Notices Valley News and Views I was invited to attend a very special workshop last weekend in SFO - not planned for because my return to ND was delayed a week by an ear/sinus infection and waiting for antibiotics to kick in. The event wasn't so different a setting for students. Three long tables lined with laptops and chairs that faced a white wall for film projection. In the chairs, however, were a class of lifelong learners - all over 50 and half the class over 80. At the end of the two- and-a-half-day workshop, the wall came alive with images and a sound track that told personal stories of each of the participants - compelling, moving stories drawn from rich experiences over a lifetime that were crafted with a tight storyline not exceeding three minutes in narration. Quite a challenge but taught by the master, Joe Lambert, founder of the Center for Digital Storytelling in Berkeley. He spent two days in Drayton three years ago after he and his 14-year-old son Massimo presented a workshop at the ND Museum of Art in Grand Forks, teaching the 'rt of Digital Storytelling." My filmmaker son Lars from Santa Barbara and myself participated as well and began a foursome seven-day tour across the prairies in an RV to learn the method and practice in producing short digital documentaries. An eBook was produced from the tour, titled "Fathers and Sons." The storytelling method in general practice has doubled since that time when the ND workshop was initiated in 2010. Now the method operates in varying levels of application in every state in our country, plus in a multitude of countries. The most impressive feature of the workshop was that the classroom transformed into a global village of sorts, each telling their personal story that touched different parts of the world. In one way, they represented artisans and entrepreneurs - social and civic entrepreneurs - who took small steps over time to produce genuinely big results. The workshop was sponsored by Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI), referred to as "Ollie" nationwide, except in the Midwest and at LIND, where it is often called "Ole." The learners first wrote a 300-400 word script, painstakingly edited to a tight story thread, then individuals narrated the story in their voice in a recording booth, added a little background music between transitions and finally, they selected photos or imported images to make the story a visual one - much like a documentary film. In the last two hours of the event, the white classroom wall lit up with a bigger- than-life personal story, accented by what seemed like surround sound, and as the credits were shown, extended applause acknowledge the creativity and performance of a new skill soon to be matched by the next digital story on the playlist. There is a familiar saying that "everyone has a story to tell." It seems to me, as a believer in lifelong learning, that every grandparent sould document a few momeats of legacy, in whatever fhion that fits them (annual etter, recording, video, 5-mnute film on a smart,, phoae; a family blog), as a gift to their grandchildren and the next generation. And when a grandchild becomes a "co-producer," you have captured an elusive treasure that most people only talked about when it can no longer happen. The Story Center is innovating a new approach in such workshops in D.C. next August, when a grandchild is admitted free as a participant when accompanying the grandparent to engage youth in the Intergenerational process - a "two for one" package. In North Dakota (ND), a project is underway, funded in part by ND Humanities Council, to train high school and college students to produce short digital stories of pioneers and veterans in their families and communities for posting on local civic Websites or in family "heritage albums." This seed grant, matched by in-kind mentoring and donated equipment (new and recycled), is a campaign of engaging "small" stories to become "epic" for some person, some place, or some purpose. The model is similar to the International movement of "Pass it (In- Kindness ...a slogan word) Forward." A new-age funding model is being explored, patterned after a mix of a credit union concept, new "kickstart" online campaigns, 99-cent iTunes contributions, and the innovative way that youth leadership programs fund their organizations (see www.stlf.net) through "chump change (pocket change) to a chunk of change (in community service)." The STLF students generate revenues to fund their own "Pay It Forward" educational tours (mostly bus) to explore a world within reach and to fulfill STLF's mission "to reveal leadership through service," relationships and action." "Forward" has a generational meaning, inspired by youth who lead change through new media that advances an educational Continued on Page 3 We're At Your Service A V Good service is important in any business... especially bankinCj. When you need a loan, have money to invest, or need financial advice, we're here to help. We have great products and services. And, we have the experience to back them. LeNOSn Serv/lg rJ unir e.f Draytc  M/a Call Us 701454-3317 Or Sign Up Today For Online Banking at www.kodabank.c0m Member FDIC VJ After a couple centuries of government support, the Protestant mores that have dominated the American culture are disappearing from the public square. A majority of Americans support same-sex marriage, legalizing marijuana, and abortion, not to mention other activities and values that many Christians find objectionable. Sunday baseball is here to stay. Scattered state laws will not turn the tide. Even in North Dakota, if the three anti-abortion measures passed by the Legislature were referred to a vote of the people, they would be defeated. Handily. In this mobile society, state boundaries mean nothing. If sin isn't available in one state, there are at least a dozen other states where it will be. The secular society has taken charge of the moral issues and there is no prognosis that suggests a resurgence of Christian values. In his recent book, Frank Newport of the Gallup organization pulled together polls and other research to support a conclusion that Christianity will bounce back when people move to the more religious areas of the country. This is wishful thinking. The findings of David Kinnaman of the Barna Christian research group cannot be ignored. He noted a significant decline in the commitment of the younger generation Christians to the faith. His observations have been confirmed by numerous surveys. A major cause of the disenchantment of youth with Christianity has been the unchristian behavior displayed by religious leaders as they battle the secular public over moral issues The younger generation sees more mean-spirited rhetoric than the gentle demeanor of Jesus in these confrontations. Once engaged, Christians have tended to distort facts and use as much inflammatory rhetoric as the secularists on the opposing side. Christians have depended on secular legislation too long for the preservation of Scriptural values. We have benefited from governmental support and protection since the very founding of the country. Times have changed and the unfounded argument that America was created as a Christian country doesn't carry any water these days. With other faiths to be accommodated, separation of church and state has taken on new meaning. Instead of ramping up our blood pressure over this separation, we shonld be thankful that Christianity has been so favorably treated for 200 years. Without the government or secular society to lean on, the Christian community will now have to assume its moral leadership on same- sex marriage, homosexuality, abortion and the other issues it regards as unchristian. Of course, the primary problem for the church is that many of the selfo proclaimed Christians have fallen in with the secular society so that believers are indistinguishable from unbelievers. (Catholics are practicing birth control and Protestants are supporting same- sex marriage.) But the honeymoon is over. The Christian community must assume responsibility for its own values. It is time for the church to teach its own members on the issues of same-sex marriage, materialism, greed, abortion, guns, homosexuality, media trash, big bang theories, and whatever other controversies appear. Forget about the government. Continued on Page 3 PUBLIC NOTICE Properties For Sale On Bid Notice is hereby given that the City of Drayton, ND is offering for sale the following property: Parcel # 29- 0490000, North 26 V2 feet of Lot 20, West side of Main Street, City of Drayton. This vacant lot is located at 114 North Main Street, Drayton ND. Minimum bid shall be $3,000.00. Written bids will be accepted until 7:00pm, May 6, 2013, at which time they will be opened and considered by the Drayton City Council. The City reserves the right to reject any and all bids and to extend the deadline for receipt of bids. Written bids shall be delivered or mailed to City of Drayton, 122 South Main Street, PO Box 280 Drayton ND 58225. 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