If I wake up in the morning and am able to take nourishment,

thank you God!

If I have a roof over my head that doesn’t leak,

thank you, God!

If I have clothes for the season and shoes that fit,

thank you, God!

If I am healthy and able to work for a living,

thank you, God!

If I belong to a Church that welcomes me at any time,

thank you, God!

I was literally raised in a barn. My father bought a barn that had been used to store hay and moved it onto our property. But then, he was drafted for World War II, so the barn waited, as did we. After the war, Dad worked days at a quarry.

Nights he would bring Mother, my brother, sister, and me out to the barn and worked on it by the light of a kerosene lamp. He did this for 10 months until our home was livable, and with great joy, we moved in on my second birthday.

We were grateful for the oil cloth on the walls, plank flooring, a coal stove that had the chimney sticking out of the window, and for the kerosene lamps. My parents hauled water from a farm across the road for drinking, bathing, cooking, cleaning, and laundry. Lastly, thank you, God for our outhouse that we used in all kinds of weather.

But most of all, thank you, God, for taking away my breast cancer so I am here another day to say, thank you, God!

Cheryl "Rusty" Gash

St. Anne