Pioneers, Perseverance, and Prayer

 

County Mayor John Whaley welcomed the full house to the 10th Annual County Prayer Breakfast at the Nisku Inn on Saturday September 29th. It proved to be a very popular event this year, drawing representatives from seventeen different municipalities to attend the event.
Mayor Whaley opened the breakfast by thanking everyone for getting up so early on a Saturday, and then continued with an interesting explanation of the Anglo-Saxon root of the word "harvest", which derives from the word meaning "autumn". Next there was some scripture reading, followed by Edmonton gospel trio Renewed coming forward to lead the crowd in O' Canada, as well as entertaining with several classic gospel favourites. 
Then the much awaited guest speaker was introduced and a spontaneous standing ovation occurred as the former Premier of Alberta, Mr. Ed Stelmach stepped onto the podium.
Mr. Stelmach began his presentation by stating that by watching the happenings in the world today, how it further reinforces the need for prayer. He spoke of how his grandparents emigrated from the Ukraine in 1898, where they had been serfs. It was a terrible way of life over there, where your hard won possessions, including your home and lands, could be taken away from you by the authorities at any time, for almost any reason. He continued on to say that his grandparents persevered due to their tremendous faith in God, and how a common goal that all the early pioneers shared was a desire to strive towards establishing a better way of life for future generations. So with God's help they knew they could overcome all of the challenges they would face.
Just seventeen years later his grandparents had established their farm in Alberta and built a large house on the property. However, he stated, they did not turn their backs on God because they were now affluent. Mr. Stelmach said that in his observation, as people today become more affluent, they tend to forget what got them there because life is good, and they don't feel the need to say thanks. 
He then spoke of how "Faith in God gives you strength; strength gives you endurance; endurance gives you stamina, which in turn gives you confidence. Confidence that can overcome, with God's help, all of the challenges that you face."
Mr. Stelmach then shared that his parents had faced a lot of challenges in their lives. They were married in 1930, in the heart of the depression, and raised five children, the youngest of which was himself. He stated that he felt very lucky to be here as his dad was 48 years old when he was born, and his mother was just a few years younger. He joked that they always used to say that it must have been a poor band that played that night as mom and dad came home early.
Aside from the normal challenges and difficulties that can face a farm family, such as early frosts and hail that destroys crops, his parents also dealt with the loss of his sister in law at a very young age, leaving behind her two children who were four years old and 18 months at the time. Then shortly after that her husband, Mr. Stelmach's brother, also died, leaving his parents, who were in their 70's, to raise another two children.  
"My parents made sure that these children had a good upbringing, a good education, and turned those children into healthy, productive adults. How did they do it?" He questioned, "Again, by their very strong faith that gave them the strength."
He went on to say that he also learned from his parents that Sunday was a day of worship, and a day of rest. "So often in today's world we don't get a chance to rest." said Mr. Stelmach. "But I was raised in a community where heaven help you if the pigs broke out of their pen on Sunday morning, because then you had to use the hammer ever so lightly so the neighbours wouldn't hear you and say 'What are those Stelmachs doing working on a Sunday?"  
He shared that it was all a part of life as he was growing up, and it left him with wonderful memories of his parents working together, and not being afraid to pray. Or afraid of talking about the fact that you prayed first thing in the morning, in the afternoon, or when something bad happened and you joined others in prayer.
He then commented that few people need more prayer than our elected officials in the Legislature. "For some people today having faith in a political setting may not make sense to them," said Mr. Stelmach, "but for us it did. Sometimes you have to go against great odds and this is where the endurance comes from."
As he drew his speech to a close, Mr. Stelmach said that he felt very fortunate to be there that morning sharing in a prayer breakfast, and he felt in his heart that this morning will help people, as other prayer breakfasts are held across the nation, to slow down, reflect and pray, and seek divine guidance for our elected officials. He stated, "We are so fortunate to be living in Canada. And even more fortunate to be living in this island of prosperity called Alberta. This gives us time to say thank you to God for living here. We are so Blessed."
Mr. Stelmach thanked the County for the donation to his Foundation, as well as all the sponsors that helped to put the breakfast together. Breakfast then came to a close as he returned to his seat in the midst of another standing ovation.
In lieu of payment, the County made a donation to the Ed Stelmach Community Foundation. This foundation supports charities that do not receive direct funding from the government and are focused on helping children. Information about this Foundation can be found at www.edstelmachfoundation.com
More Stories:
  • Power Off Predators Technology, the Internet and social media are facts of life in today’s society, and with all the benefits, there is a dark corner where predators groom and lure young people. When Warburg resident Colleen Foster was approached ...
  • Turkey Chase and Search for The Yeti The Annual Devon Turkey Chase is in its 9th year, held once again at the Lions Campground on the shore of the North Saskatchewan River. This fun outdoor event is so rooted in the Town of Devon’s local culture, that it has ...
  • Fall Food Roundup Success The shelves of the Leduc and District Food Bank are filling up again with another successful Fall Food Round Up. This year, 17,679 pounds of food was collected in the door-to-door food drive Oct. 6. Another 3,900 pounds have ...
  • Leduc Food Bank Cooking Lessons Each month, between 100 and 150 families in the Beaumont, Calmar, Leduc, Leduc County, Devon, New Sarepta, Thorsby, Nisku and Warburg walk through the doors at the Leduc and District Food Bank looking for help to feed their ...
  • Young Leaders To Be Praised At 3rd Annual Mayor’s Event On October 29th, from noon till 2 pm, at the Best Western, over 70 Leduc teens will be applauded for their character, service and leadership at the 3rd Annual Mayor’s Youth Leadership Recognition Awards Luncheon. Leduc Mayor ...
  • Battle Lake Church Welcomes New Pastor A Commissioning Service planned for October 25 marks the first six months of the Buchholz’ pastoral ministry at Battle Lake Community Baptist Church. This is a momentous event for the congregation as it marks the end of a ...
  • Saving Lives During Operation Impact Submitted by S/Sgt Neill Pearson A/Officer in Charge, Wetaskiwin RCMP October 10-13, 2014 will mark Operation Impact, a national campaign to make Canada’s roads the safest in the world. Members of the Wetaskiwin RCMP detachment ...
  • 1st Annual WCTS Walker-Thon Raises Over $3,000!!! The Wetaskiwin Community Transportation Society held its 1st Annual Walker-thon earlier today (Friday, September 26, 2014) at the Wetaskiwin Mall. Led by Mayor Bill Elliot and W1440 Morning Man Billy Williams, 14 participants ...
  • Yee Haw Warburg Harvest Hoedown It’s pretty hard to beat toe-tappingly good, canned country music at events. In fact, only one thing can beat it - live music, from the heart music. From September 19 through 21, 2014, between 300 to 325 attendees of the ...
  • Pet Valu “Thanks for Giving” Campaign Pet Valu (Wetaskiwin) is participating in Pet Valu Canada’s 3rd annual, “Thanks for Giving” campaign to collect donations to help stock the Wetaskiwin Animal Shelter with dog and cat food, treats, toys, collars and leashes. ...
  • Wayfinding In Leduc The City of Leduc wants to help visitors and residents find their way around. On Sept. 30, around 45 people gathered in Lede Room at the Leduc Civic Centre to learn about wayfinding and offer their opinions on the best way ...
  • 2014 Jumpstart Pedal For Kids A Success Meeting the people that the Jumpstart program helps, was enough motivation for Leduc resident, Rachel Yeung, to push herself on the 2,500 km bike trek during the 2014 Jumpstart Pedal for Kids event last month. Yeung and 70 ...
  • Toxic And E-Waste, Be Gone! On Saturday, October 4th, the City of Leduc hosted its Annual Toxic and E-Waste Roundup at the Eco-Station located on 46 Street, on the east side of the railroad tracks (6102 - 46 St.). Members of the City of Leduc Public ...
  • Do Something Magazine Launch Do Something Magazine held its launch party on Saturday, October 4th, at 1:30pm at Leduc Composite High School. The afternoon was filled with entertainment and the first issue of the magazine was made available to the public ...
  • Leduc Food Bank In High Gear On October 6, 2014, the 20th Annual Food Drive will take place in the City of Leduc, one of the most significant ‘Food-raising’ campaigns for the Leduc & District Food Bank. (LDFB) Within the City and County of Leduc, residents ...
  • Looking At Today’s Wetaskiwin Library The Wetaskiwin Public Library has changed. The library started out in 1928 in a room within the Wales Hotel on Main Street in Wetaskiwin with 50 books and just 37 members. Look at it today. A major remodelling project that ...
  • Wetaskiwin 25th Anniversary Of Special Olympics When the Special Olympics athletes, coaches, families and friends came together to celebrate 25 years of organization and competition in Wetaskiwin, they celebrated an impressive record of success. This record is represented ...
  • Millet A ‘Five Bloom’ Communities In Bloom Recipient Millet can stand proud again with Communities in Bloom. The Town of Millet received a Five Bloom rating and a special mention for the Pipestone Park Enhancement Project during the 2014 National Symposium and Awards ceremonies ...
  • Grant Thornton 25th Anniversary Grant Thornton celebrated 25 years in Wetaskiwin with a barbecue and drive to collect food and funds for the Salvation Army Food Bank. In that time, the accounting firm has grown from about nine staff to the present three ...
  • Three Women Are Technically Twisted At Reynolds Museum Metal Art Show & Sale On September 20th and 21st, among the displays of antique machinery and cars at the Reynolds Alberta Museum, were displays of stunning jewelry, custom knives, chainmail, steam punk, and sculptures; creations from sterling ...




 
  • Leduc Radio Ad
  • Industrial Netmedia
  • Industrial Netmedia
  • Industrial Netmedia