In March of 2003, during the Shock and Awe" military campaign, three American members of a Christian Peacemaker Team were injured in a car accident in the Iraqi desert. (One of those peacemakers, Cliff Kindy, is from North Manchester, Ind.. He came and added his memories to the presentation.) They were taken to Rutba, a Sunni-majority town whose lone hospital had been partially destroyed just three days earlier by U.S. bombs.

The peacemakers feared that they would be targeted for retribution. Instead, they were met with kindness and compassion. Dr. Farouq Al-Dulaimi, who treated their wounds, said, “We take care of everyone - Christian, Muslim, Iraqi, American. It doesn’t matter. We are all human beings. We are all sisters and brothers.” When it came time for the peacemakers to leave, Dr. Al-Dulaimi had one request: “Just go and tell the world about Rutba.”

In his book and his presentations, Barrett has been helping the peacemakers do just that. He emphasized that the barriers people erect between ourselves - along religious, national, political, racial, or economic lines - obscure the fact that, as humans, “we’ve got far more in common with each other than differences.”

Barrett, who spent 20 years traveling the globe as a wire correspondent, has found that to be true wherever he goes. The peacemakers in Iraq, he said, “discovered that ‘the enemy’ wasn’t the enemy.” Instead of being split by doctrinal and national differences, the American Christians and the Iraqi Muslims were united by the experiences and values they shared.

Barrett hopes that people take more from the The Gospel of Rutba than just a heartwarming story. Acknowledging our shared humanity requires us to reevaluate our own beliefs and actions, both individually and collectively, he observed.

Barrett expressed specific concern about U.S. military policy in the Middle East. On a return trip to Iraq in 2010, he spoke with one of the nurses who treated the peacemakers in 2003. Echoing what Barrett had heard around the region, the nurse said, “We love Americans, but we hate your violence.” With bombs and drones, the U.S. government fights terror by using weapons of terror

In doing so, Barrett believes the U.S. is only perpetuating violence and hardening the hearts of people outside the country. He looks to the Christian peacemakers as better examples of how to effect positive change in the Middle East. By going to damaged, destitute areas and acting with empathy to find common ground, Barrett calls these peacemakers “some of the best diplomats America has.”

This event was co-sponsored by the Pulaski County Public Library and the Winamac First United Methodist Church. The library has copies of The Gospel of Rutba available for checkout.

Article submitted by the Pulaski County Public Library


Local News Briefs

PMH to offer immunization clinics for school children

Pulaski Memorial Hospital will offer three immunization clinics for school-aged children at the PMH Medical Office Building behind the hospital (540 Hospital Dr., Winamac).

The clinics will be 12 noon to 7 p.m., Wednesday (July 23); 12 noon to 7 p.m., Friday (July 25); and 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., Saturday (Aug. 2).

Pulaski County unemployment rate ticks up to 5.0 percent in June

No Indiana counties at 9.0 percent or higher

Pulaski County's unemployment rate ticked up to 5.0 percent in June, up from 4.7 percent in May, the Indiana Department of Workforce Development reported Friday (July 18). The rate was 6.6 percent a year ago. The county has 6,580 employed persons in a labor force of 6,925. Last month those numbers were 6,300 of 6,619.

The state's June rate also inched up to 5.9 percent, compared to 5.7 percent (seasonally adjusted) in Mayl. The June 2013 rate was 7.6 percent. The U.S. rate dropped to 6.1 percent, down from 6.3 percent (seasonally adjusted), in May. A year ago, the national rate was 7.5 percent.

County Council to hold budget workshops

The Pulaski County Council will hold its annual budget workshop with county elected officials and department heads to discuss their 2015 budgets, beginning at 8:30 a.m., Monday and Tuesday, July 28-29, in the Commissioners Room in the Courthouse in Winamac.

Kersting’s 'Learn To Ride' provides opportunity for area youth, adults

Kersting’s Cycle Center & Museum opened in 1962, sparked by owner Jim Kersting’s passion for the joy and freedom of riding motorcycles.

Kersting’s hopes to pass along that enthusiasm for motorsports by offering “Learn To Ride” training sessions to interested youth and adults at their facility, located northwest of Winamac. The program is off to a solid start and the initial season of training is scheduled for each Saturday now through Labor Day weekend.

Pulaski County Public Library lists July events

The Pulaski County Public Library has listed its special programs and activities for July.

All events will take place at the Winamac branch unless otherwise noted. For more information on any program, call the library at 574-946-3432.

German Fest Aug. 9 in Winamac

German Fest will return to Winamac, sponsored by the Pulaski County Chamber of Commerce, from 3 p.m. to 12 midnight, Saturday, Aug. 9, in downtown Winamac.

The event will feature children's activities, a German brats meal, a beer garden, and Jay Fox and the Bavarian Show Band.

Chamber of Commerce Golf Outing Aug. 9

The annual Pulaski County Chamber of Commerce Golf Outing will tee off at 8:30 a.m., Saturday, Aug. 9, at Pond View Golf Course, Star City. Registration will begin at 8 a.m.

The event will be followed by the Chamber's "Germanfest" in downtown Winamac, which will begin at 3 p.m.

Warrior/Panther football game Aug. 30 at Lucas Oil Stadium

WINAMAC - The Winamac Warriors football team will play the Pioneer Panthers at 12 noon, Saturday, Aug. 30, at Lucas Oil Stadium, Indianapolis.

Tickets are available from any WCHS football player and/or cheerleader. Advance tickets are $11 for adults (13 and over) and $8 for children (12 and under). Gameday tickets will cost $15 for all tickets.

Pulaski County History Museum open summer Saturdays

The Pulaski County History Museum is open every Saturday during the summer, from 1 to 4 p.m.

Operated by the Pulaski County Historical Society, the museum is located along the Tippecanoe River behind the County Building on Riverside Drive, Winamac. Admission is free.

Food Pantry needs donations

The local Food Pantry, overseen by Pulaski County Human Services, is in need of donations, especially as school is out and families cope to feed children at home for the summer.

Last month, the Food Pantry served 135 local families, totaling 404 individuals who received 16,968 pounds of food.

Registration underway for YMCA Flag Football

Registration is undery for the YMCA Flag Football program which will begin in August..

This six-week program is open to children in grades K-5. Practices will be held once a week with games held on Thursday evenings beginning Aug. 7.


Fair News

'Year of the Coliseum' at state fair

INDIANAPOLIS – The Indiana State Fair is always a celebration.

It celebrates agriculture, youth and all foods deep-fried or served on a stick. But this year’s fair is historic for another reason – a reopened Fairgrounds Coliseum following an 18-month, $53 million renovation.

Indiana State Fair runs Aug. 1-17

INDIANAPOLIS - The 2014 Indiana State Fair, with the theme "A Time to Celebrate" will run Aug. 1-17 at the Indiana State Fairgrounds; 1202 E. 38th St. Indianapolis.

The fair is filled with agriculture, livestock, home and family arts, horticulture, 4-H and other exhibits, competitions, concerts, family fun events, educational displays, a huge midway, and endless food concessions.

Open Class Exhibit champions named

The Open Class exhibits at the Pulaski County fair provide proof that 4-Hers are not the only ones working hard on creative projects. Over 300 open class exhibits were displayed throughout the week inside the Community Building on the fairgrounds.

The Open Class exhibits are sponsored by the Extension Homemakers, but open to all.  

2014 4-H livestock champions announced

The Pulaski County 4-H & Community Fair 2014 4-H livestock champions have been announced as follows:

(Results will be updated as they are received)

2014 4-H Project champions named

Here are results from 4-H exhibit judgings at the 2014 Pulaski County 4-H & Community Fair.

(Results will be updated as they are received)

Justine Kruger crowned 2014 Miss Pulaski County

Justine Kruger of Francesville was crowned Miss Pulaski County 2014 at the annual pageant Sunday night (June 29), during the Pulaski County 4-H & Community Fair. She is the 20-year-old daughter of Gary and Tish Kruger.

Alyssa Garnett, last year's queen, crowned her successor after delivering her farewell speech and taking a last walk across the pageant runway. 

4-H Achievement Program opens fair

“Rising Above the Rest” is the theme for the 2014 Pulaski County 4-H & Community Fair which runs Saturday June 28 through Thursday July 3 at the county fairgrounds in the Winamac park.

One of the primary features of the fair is to showcase the projects completed by our 4-H youth - demonstrating what they have learned in this valuable program which develops talents as well as important skills and values. For many years now 4-H members include “city kids” as well as “farm kids.”


Indy Star Top Stories

Indystar - Today's Top Stories
Indystar - Today's Top Stories

Post News

BraunAbility to build final Paratransit Van in October; celebrates the legacy

WINAMAC – BraunAbility is scheduled to build its final Paratransit commercial vehicle in October and honored the life of the vehicle line with a celebration on Wednesday. The paratranist line produced mobility-equipped full-size vans for commercial use.

Over 25,000 Paratransit vans were built in Winamac over the course of the vehicle’s life, with 3,000 being delivered to North Carolina alone. Kim Angel of Macon County, North Carolina was present. Her agency represented one of the hundreds of customers that BraunAbility supplied with paratransit vehicles over the past 38 years.

2nd judge declares right-to-work law unconstitutional; state to seek stay

INDIANAPOLIS – A Lake County judge has struck down Indiana’s 2012 right-to-work law that made it illegal for companies to compel non-union members to pay fees for union services.

But Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller said Wednesday that he will ask for a stay to prevent the decision from taking effect immediately. A similar case is already pending before the Indiana Supreme Court.

Pence wraps up UK trip with more business meetings

INDIANAPOLIS – Gov. Mike Pence wrapped up his job-hunting mission Wednesday by meeting with a company he said is considering Indiana for its U.S. operations – but his office wouldn’t reveal the firm’s name or any details.

“Out of respect for the company, we cannot share further details about the company or their potential plans in Indiana at this time,” said Pence spokeswoman Christy Denault. “However, we hope to have good news to share in the future.”

State officials confident transportation deal will prevent highway funding cuts

INDIANAPOLIS — State officials are so confident Congress will pass a deal to cover a shortfall in a federal highway fund that they have not solidified contingency plans that would be needed if the money runs out next month.

Will Wingfield, a spokesman for the Indiana Department of Transportation, said the agency has been watching the situation closely and has started to prepare plans. But he said officials feel “pretty confident” that Congress will step in.

Fieldwork, fairs, and fair weather for Hoosier farmers last week

LANSING - With minimal precipitation and cool clear weather for the majority of the week ending July 13, Indiana farmers found plenty of opportunity to engage in all manner of fieldwork according to the USDA, National Agriculture Statistics Service, Great Lakes Region.

Average temperatures ranged from 69 to 78 degrees, or 5 degrees below to 2 degrees above normal. The lowest recorded temperature for the week was 50 degrees; the highest, 92 degrees. The statewide average temperature for the week was 72.6 degrees, 2.3 degrees below normal.

Grads in Action assist Humanitarian Distribution Center

The Pulaski County Community Foundation’s fourth annual Grads in Action project took place June 14 at the Humanitarian Distribution Center (HDC) in Francesville. 

2014 PCCF scholars were invited to participate, giving them an opportunity to show off their grad-itude to their community before heading off to college.

West Central School Board reviews several issues

FRANCESVILLE – The West Central School Board reviewed several issues at its regular meeting Thursday night (July 10), including a new firearms policy, allowing home-schooled students to participate in the school’s athletic programs, and its 2015 budget.

The board also accepted several resignations and made numerous appointments at the meeting.

Nature Conservancy announces 'National Treasures' Challenge; invites Hoosiers to visit state's natural areas

The Nature Conservancy and Honda to launch a summer sweepstakes for a chance to win a Honda Civic Hybrid

INDIANAPOLIS - Walking the Tall Timbers Trail at Big Walnut. Trekking through the abandoned town of Conrad. Hopping over to the Rabbit Hash Trail. Gazing at the endless waterfowl at Goose Pond. Or checking out the amazing wildlife at Eagle Marsh.

With summer in full swing, Indiana’s natural areas are calling your name, inviting you to get outside and explore. While you’re at it, take a photo – and you may win a Honda Civic Hybrid!

4-H Livestock Auction totals over $141,754

By Karen Clem Fritz

Buyers paid a total of $141,754.65 at the annual 4-H Livestock Auction at the 2014 Pulaski County 4-H & Community Fair Thursday evening (July 3) at the Winamac fairgrounds. The amount was down from last year’s total of $148,359.70. (The 2006 record auction totaled $157,816.46.)

Cattle, sheep and hogs at the auction numbered 107, compared to 124 last year. There were five starter calves and 21 goats sold. Other items auctioned included poultry, dairy products and kisses by 4-H Royalty and Miss Pulaski County.

Ellspermann: 60% of Indiana workforce will have post-secondary skills by 2025

INDIANAPOLIS – The Indiana lieutenant governor said Tuesday (July 8) that by the year 2025 the Pence administration expects that 60 percent of Indiana’s workforce will have post-secondary skills.

Lt. Gov. Sue Ellspermann kicked off the Workforce Development and Education Conference by presenting “A Strategic Plan to Transform Indiana’s Workforce.”