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December 2003

2003/2004 Up Coming Events

December 6 Christmas Party, Joliet, IL, 6 pm
December 21 Work Meeting, Capt. Bob’s, 2 pm
January 8 Board Meeting, Capt. Bob’s, 7:30 pm
January 24 Minooka Library Recruiting Event, 11 am

No December Meeting (but an Important One in January)

At the November meeting, it was moved and passed that the December board meeting be canceled, as the Christmas Party will be just two days later.  We will be looking for input from the membership at that party on a number of subjects that will be worked out at both a work meeting in December and the next board meeting on January 8th at 7:30 pm.  At this meeting we will be discussing what will be happening over the next year, including voting on our event schedule.  This is one of the most important meetings of the year, please attend and make your voice heard!

Multi Task Meeting

On December 21st at 2:00 pm there will be a meeting at Capt. Bob’s house for a number of subjects.

At the November meeting two shelter tents were donated to the unit.  Thanks go out to Scott Gutzke and Ken Gough.

So you can see, we’re planning on doing some good work at this meeting.  We can always use some more help.  Hope to see you there.

Best Dollinger Farm Yet!

At the November board meeting Diane Bierman reported that there were 624 signed waivers turned in!  Other events who shall remain nameless billing themselves as the “Largest Re-enactment in Illinois,” eat your hearts out.

Mid Winter Recruiting

On Saturday, January 24th from 11:00 to 4:00 the 64th will be doing a living history / recruiting event at the Three Rivers Library in Minooka.  This is a great chance to pull on the wool, dust off the traps, and show off those items we so rarely get to display at events.  This will be an indoor event so please, no rounds or caps.  There will be inert rounds for show.

School Liaison

With the formation of the 15th IL in the Rockford area, the 64th cannot continue running the Fry Bread booth.  This is only fair as their members play a major role in running this event.  So, to take the place of this fundraising effort we will be doing school presentations.

Ken Gough will be acting as School Liaison for the 64th IL. Any members who know of a school or other organization who would like the 64th to do a presentation of some sort should forward this information to Ken.  He will then organize the event.

Also, any members who would be willing to donate a vacation day or two for these presentations should inform Ken so he knows what assets the unit can draw from.

Chaplain’s Corner
By Chaplain Jerry Kowalski

The campaign season is behind us, and a long stretch in Winter Quarters lies ahead.  Soon we will be bombarded with Christmas.  You will again be crushed with the need to send greeting cards, buy presents and attend functions.  What does any of this have to do with the birth of Christ?  The early Church considered Easter and its surrounding events as the focal point of the Christian message.  Christmas was put into the calendar to supplant the pagan feast of Lupercalia.  Ah, those Romans knew how to throw a party.  Young women would chase young men around on the holiday with whips, and it turned into a real “Sadie Hawkins Day” type of event.  The whole thing was spurned on by the fact that the togas were left at home.  To replace this pagan ritual, early Church Fathers substituted the Feast of the Birth of Christ.  They felt that they had to tone things down a bit.

Simple logic and a study of the terrain tells us that Christ was born in the summer – otherwise the sheep would not have been grazing in the fields, they would have been in the cave where Christ was born.  Mary and Joseph were turned away by the Inn Keeper, not so much because he didn’t have any room, but rather because the inns of that time were open courtyards with roofs over the outer areas – and all open, with no privacy for Mary to have her child.  Sending her off to the cave was really a good deal.

We also know from a study of the times that the Romans never had a world wide census.  They didn’t give a darn about how many people were in their territories, but what they did have were taxes.  Ah yes taxes, and the Romans knew how to tax.  They didn’t do it themselves.  Instead they sold the warrants to the highest bidder.  That tax collector would then, with the aid and support of the Roman Army, collect the taxes on the properties in a given region.  The notice would be posted, and the landowner would have a certain amount of time in which to show up and pay the taxes on his land.  If he did not, the tax collector could simply sell the land for whatever he could get, and pocket all the rest.  This is one of the reasons why tax collectors are so hated in the New Testament.  So why do you think Joseph would put his pregnant wife on a donkey and travel some 90 miles from Nazareth in Galilee to Bethlehem in Judea in the heat of the summer?  Because he had to pay taxes or lose his land.  Joseph was not a poor carpenter, he must have been a pretty good one.  Carpenters at that time not only built things, but they also designed and engineered the things they built.  He was good enough to avoid the civil trouble with Herod and move to a foreign country – Egypt, and support his family until his legal problems went away.

Where is all of this going?  Christmas is special because of the way people treat one another.  The traditions are clouded in the past and are not nearly as important as what we do right here and now with each other.  Far more important than any commercial gift is a kind word or deed.  I would rather have a hug than a mug.  I would rather have peace on earth than a piece of cake.  I would rather be told that I am loved, than get a pair of gloves.

Merry Christmas.

Fall Out
By Ken Gough

We’re into the winter again but unlike most winters the 64th has a lot of activities to keep us busy.  A new board to be selected, military ranks to be decided, sewing projects, and round rolling.  If we have time maybe a game session or two.

We’ll be having sign up sheets and will be asking for help and ideas at the party.  Please think about helping out.  Even if it is just with ideas, this is your unit.  Why not have it include things you want to do.

Are there things you would like to see us include in our weekends?  More drill? Maybe lots more!? Would you like to see us do more camp life (cooking, mending, paperwork, etc.)?  We started the color guard last year and it has been a success.  There’s no reason the same thing can’t be done with another subject.  Chris and myself have started a living history mess for the candle light tours and although we’ve not had the chance to put it into play yet we’ve had some members asking about it.  I’ve been dragging around the winter quarters for a couple years and, although this is an extreme example, you can see what doing something on your own to enhance the living history of the unit can do.

Any ideas?


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