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november 2008 David M. Williams Program Director Larry Aldrich Operations Manager Randy Hess Maintenance Supervisor Larry
november 2008 David M. Williams Program Director Larry Aldrich Operations Manager Randy Hess Maintenance Supervisor Larry

David M. Williams

Program Director

Larry Aldrich

Operations Manager

Randy Hess

Maintenance Supervisor

Larry O’Connor Greg Mann Roger Klein Donn Baker John Lofquist

Client Supervisors

David McKnight

Van Driver

Solomona Talivaa


Anthony Boone


Neil Givens

Learning Center

Darlene Whaley

Kitchen Manager

Anchorage Gospel Rescue Mission A Ministry of Rescue & Recovery

A publication of the Anchorage Gospel Rescue Mission • Anchorage, Alaska

t h a n k s g i v i n g

A Time To Be Thankful—A Time To Share

W here did the time go? I cannot believe that it has already been a whole

this opportunity to Thank You for all of your help through this last year.

year since I was wrote the last Thanksgiving newsletter! I want to take

Your prayers, nancial support, in-kind gifts and time volunteered to help with some of the many things that have to be done, We are indeed thankful. However, the day is drawing near, it seems like each year the time goes by faster and faster. Actually we do look forward to the holidays, always with a little anxiety and apprehension. We try to anticipate how many people we will serve, how much food it will take or money to sponsor the event and make it a real success. This year it is a real challenge because of the economic conditions and more and more people coming to the city, it presents a real problem. We will serve everyone that comes to the Mission one way or another. We do not count success by how many we serve, but by how many we had the opportunity to share the Gospel with and how many came to know Him as their Savior as a results of our Chapel service and personal witnessing.

But, we do need help with food for our Thanksgiving dinner and for your “volunteer help” (opportunities for you to serve are listed in the Directors Desk page of this newsletter). Many people would be without a Thanksgiving Dinner if it were not for the Mission providing it. We want to continue to be the outlet to help people during this season and we need YOU TO SUPPLY THE MEANS.

special needs for thanksgiving

(Thanksgiving Dinner will be served on WEDNESDAY November 26, from 3 to 5:30 PM)

Lots and Lots of Turkeys – Stuf ng Mix – Cranberry Sauce Green Beans – Corn – Instant Mashed Potatoes— Onions – Celery – Fruit Cocktail – Dinner Rolls Canned Sweet Potatoes – Marshmallows – Pumpkin Apple and Pecan Pie.

– Celery – Fruit Cocktail – Dinner Rolls Canned Sweet Potatoes – Marshmallows – Pumpkin Apple
– Celery – Fruit Cocktail – Dinner Rolls Canned Sweet Potatoes – Marshmallows – Pumpkin Apple
kitchen update Darlene Whaley
kitchen update
Darlene Whaley


Hello! As the newest member of the Anchorage Gospel Rescue Missions staff, I would like to introduce myself. My name is Darlene Whaley and I am a volunteer with AmeriCorps. My duty assignment is Kitchen Program Training Manager and I am responsible for the daily activities of food production and instructing “NewLifeparticipants in their quest to gain meaningful employment upon graduating from the program. I am instrumental in helping them in obtaining the necessary certications for employment in the culinary eld, I also assist in composing resumes and cover letters, and conducting job searches. I secure guests speakers to present information on relevant issues such as anger management, life skills, how to conduct job interviews, workplace ethics and nutrition and health.

My qualications include owning and operating two restaurants, twenty years comprehensive experience with the management of staff, preparation and cooking of meals in the restaurant, catering and oileld environment. I was involved in the selection and training of staff, menu planning and design, procurement, inventory control and food and labor cost. I also have eleven years management experience with Alaska Airlines I am currently attending Wayland Baptist University seeking a degree in Occupational Education. I have signed up for a year of service at the mission and my 90-day probation period will be over October 28 th .

The kitchen staff I am honored to work with performs under some very challenging conditions. Menus can change at any moment as we are dependent on the kindness of

those who donate food items and equipment

be constantly accessed, rotated and used according to its condition. We are forced to become very resourceful in our culinary creations. This is a positive occurrence. I am blessed to have some very skilled chef’s in the kitchen to help guide the less trained. When the “NewLife” Disciples set forth in the community to contribute their knowledge and skills, they will have an advantage over those trained with limitless products at their disposal. They will be able to accomplish creative menu planning with what is on hand They also succeed to create delicious meals, using less than perfect equipment. Our ovens are quite a challenge. They are hot in the back, cooler in the front and vary over 100 degrees in temperature. I am certainly not complaining. We are blessed by the kindness of others and we are thankful for all the equipment donations we receive. We utilize everything and make it work.

Food must

The rst assignment a Disciple Trainee is given is the kitchen, so I have the responsibility to welcome them and begen the training. The most difcult part of my assignment is losing Disciples. Some chose to return to their former lives, and I somehow feel I have failed them. This is a dilemma all new staffers experience and must seek to overcome.

I am extremely thankful that I have the opportunity to work with this group of people. I would recommend and/ or hire each and every one of them, given the opportunity. Our kitchen is shining clean and great care is taken to meet all of the health codes. Please consider donating any useable items to our culinary program. The more equipment we have for training, the better qualied they will become. The more varied food products they have to utilize, the more procient they will become. Feel free to come in and donate your time in the kitchen. You can assist in serving meals and daily clean-up. I am looking forward to meeting you. Just pop in the kitchen and we will give you the grand tour.

2 We invite you to visit us on the web or drop us an E-mail

We invite you to visit us on the web or drop us an E-mail with your comments and suggestions

Rev. Don Bettis director’s desk OPPORTUNITY TO SERVE VOLUNTEERS NEEDED! We are offering the following
Rev. Don Bettis director’s desk
Rev. Don Bettis
director’s desk



We are offering the following

opportunities for YOU to help


Rescue Mission this Thankgiving.

Our Volunteer Coordinator Jeanne Lutz— Phone 278-9679, needs volunteers of individuals and families that can make the following commitments of time on Wednesday November

26 th 2008.

Team 1 Prepare food and decorate facility for the Thanksgiving meal – To be served on Wednesday, November 26 th (Not Thursday). Need a commitment of 4 consecutive hours beginning in the morning.


dessert and clean up of facilities at the close – Wednesday, November November 26 th (Not Thursday). Need a commitment of 5 consecutive hours beginning in the afternoon.






Both teams require children to be a minimum of 8 years of age.

a day to be thankful

What Does It Mean To You?

Are you really thankful for the things God has done for you—for all of the blessings He has given you; are you even aware that they come from God or do you think you have done it on your own? Or, are you too busy to just pause a moment and reect on what you have and where you are now. Are you thankful for the little things in life that you just take for granted? What if all of the blessings were stopped—because you never take time to thank God for all of the little things He does for you. When you look at other people that are less fortunate than yourself or see a person that is homeless do you stop and say, “but for the grace of God, there go I’.

Please take time on this Thanksgiving Day and everyday to give thanks to God. Let us become a thankful people.

We are thankful for you! Each day at the Mission we count our blessings as we see how God has touched your heart and you share with us nancially, with in-kind gifts and by volunteering to help.


We are so blessed by the gifts from Your hand I just cannot understand Why you have loved us so much We are so blessed, we just cannot nd a way or The words that can say, Thank you Lord, for Your touch

Jeanne will do the scheduling of the teams. You may reach her at her home telephone after 6 P.M. and weekends or leave a message on her telephone recorder. Please leave an evening number and speak the number slowly. She will give you specic details about team assignments and schedule your time to work.

When we are empty You ll us until we overow, When we are hungry You feed us and cause us to know; We are so blessed, Take what we have to bring; Take it all everything, Lord, we love You so very much.


testimonies Michael Luesse
Michael Luesse

“The Collapsible Man”

Hello! My name is Michael, and I am “The Collapsible Man”.

remember it as a bad time but as an exciting and adventurous time. Flash forward to Winnemucca, NV in the late sixties. It is from here that I can piece together a more complete picture of my life. Grade school, Bridge Street, the premier of “Planet of the Apes” at the cinema, and shing in the Humboldt River. Mom was hired as a “21” dealer at the Winners Casino. In an industry that was predominantly male at that time, my mom had the rare honor of being the rst woman dealer in Winnemucca. She had her picture in the paper even; go gure. I have to mention here a man by the name of Joe Mackie. He was the owner of the Winners Casino and took care of our little family for a time. He gave my mom a job, got us into a little place on Bridge Street, and even bought my mom a car, so she wouldn’t have to walk to work or take a cab. What I remember most about him was his policy of giving any kid that needed it, a free haircut at the casino. I learned later that he had connections to the “mob”, but I didn’t hold that against him. In my book he was a sweetheart of a guy. His end came in the form of a small place crash that killed him and his family. Reportedly it was a maa “hit”. My brother and I knew it was time to move again when our mom pulled up in front of the house towing a U- Haul trailer. Next stop Reno, NV, where I started Junior High. Uh oh, moms got a load of cardboard boxes, must be time to move. Sparks next, then Fallon and here’s where the real story of “The Collapsible Man” begins… I started High School in Fallon, NV, and soon found myself hanging out with the “wrong crowd”. The school was divided into two factions, or classes, of students other than nerds, who in fact had no class. You either belonged to the cowboys or the surfers (hippies), and since cowboy

I call myself that because as I look

back on my life, I can see chains of events that led to my collapses and reconstructions, the cycle repeating itself over and over…… I was born in Aurora, CO. in 1957. My father was an Air Force M.P., my mother was a housewife. My earliest memory is of the assassination of J.F.K. I remember the stunned silence and then the tears of the

adults, and I remember how scary and confusing it all seemed. It was also about this time that I noticed I had a little brother. What I mean is, he’d probably been crawling around down there for awhile, but his presence didn’t really register with me until that time. I remember that he smelled funny and made strange noises and had the annoying habit of drooling on everything, but when he smiled at me with that big toothless grin, I loved him instantly. My bro! The rest of my early childhood

I remember only in bits and pieces, usually a memory involving a move from one place to another, Seattle, Bellingham, Blaine, and other points in northern Washington State. My mom, by now, a single parent, moved a lot in my baby years, but always provided for my

4 brother and I. And I don’t

boots hurt my feet I felt compelled to grow my hair long and start smoking grass. I also started dressing in bellbottom pants, polyester print shirts, and platform shoes, but we won’t go there. I probably would have been better off just slipping on

a pair of cowboy boots and calling

it good, but my dignity and my feet forbade it. Anyway, four-inch platforms are much cooler. I think there’s a picture of me in one of those “outts”, oating around out there somewhere. I hope it never falls into the wrong hands as it would most certainly be used as a tool for blackmail. I didn’t realize it at the time, but what I thought was innocent experimentation with drugs and alcohol would set the pattern for

my life of repeated collapse. I wish

I could go back to that point in my

life, knowing what I know now. “The Collapsible Time Traveler?” I guess not. By the time my twenty-rst birthday rolled around, I had enlisted, and was booted out of the Army. I was married and had a new son. And I was generally just partying my way through life. But on my twenty-rst birthday, my father-in-law got me a job as a “21” dealer at the Nevada Club in Laughlin, NV. This was to prove a turning point in the story of “The Collapsible Man”. My income increased greatly along with my appetite for gambling, booze, and drugs. This soon proved to be too much for my wife, and she promptly divorced me. After my divorce, I re-enlisted in the Army and was discharged, honorably, three years later. Back to Nevada and the casinos for me. That’s where the action was, the gambling, the booze, and the drugs. For the most part I worked as a “21” and roulette dealer. But I was soon asked if I wanted to learn to be a “craps” dealer. This would prove to be another turning point

in my life. I excelled at the game and this proved to be both a blessing and a curse. A blessing in that I was


casino in Wendover, NV when the

losing it all. There probably was a point where I could have stopped and salvaged a little of my life, but

pretty much guaranteed a job in any


nothing else, “The Collapsible

casino in the state. A curse in that it left me unaccountable, uncaring, and dissatised. These years are a blur to me. A casino hopping, booze

Man” is consistent. It all came crashing down in December or 2003 when I was arrested and charged with fraud in

fogged, drug induced blur. Frankly,


gaming establishment, cheating

I’m amazed that I survived. In 1994 I was dealing cards at

for short. I’d gone to work drunk one night and was caught on camera giving the casino’s money

supposedly full of unmarked graves

hostess from the Fun Bus sat at my table. Her rst words to me were, “Are you married?” I replied that I

away. They frown on that for some reason. The desert around Vegas is

wasn’t married. Her next words so


people who did what I did, but I

startled me, that to this day I think of them and smile. She said, “Do you want to be?” That woman’s name was Virginia and a year later she was to become my wife and best friend.

got off lucky with just, a one to four sentence. Lucky me! My wife led for divorce in January 2004 and it was then that I thought I’d reached bottom. Locked up, the love of my life kicking me

After a somewhat rocky start, which


the curb, my life ruined (again),

involved a drug arrest, probation,


couldn’t get any worse than this I

and the suspension of our gaming cards, we ended up in Mesquite, NV, where we both got jobs as dealers. Within six months we had both been promoted to pit boss. We were on

thought. I was wrong. Moms are a wonderful thing. Mine was always there for me. Mine wrote me in prison and kept my spirits up. Mine put money on

the fast-track now, to success or failure, depending on how we played the hand. Given “The Collapsible

my books. Mine never gave up on me. And mine died of cancer, while instead of being at her side where

Man’s” track record, I’ll let you take

I should have been, I was serving


guess as to how this little scenario

a term in prison, for some stupid

played out. Give up? In 2002 my wife developed chronic neck pain and later had to have surgery. The outcome of this was to give our household a constant and steady stream of some very potent pain pills, and it only took a little while for the both of us to become hopelessly addicted. I’ve discovered that you can only keep up a juggling act for so long before the items you are juggling begin falling to the pavement. What had once started as a dream realized was quickly turning into a nightmare. Once again, gambling, booze, and drugs were replacing car, house payments, family, and work as priorities in my life. I was

mistake. It was the worst experience

of my life, getting that call from my

brother. I was summoned to the prison chaplain’s ofce, and handed the receiver. “Oh Mike, we lost our mom”. My brother’s words cut to

the heart of me, and I still hurt to this day. I miss her so much. I was released from prison in October 2006, dropped off at the Vegas bus station wearing prison blues; the $23 “gate money” burning

a hole in my pocket. I had two

choices. Go to the halfway house that they had arranged for me, or go

to the bar. Halfway house or bar?

Halfway house or bar? When I woke up shivering on the cold pavement

the next morning, I knew I had a

serious problem. “The Collapsible Fool”. What happens in Vegas doesn’t always stay in Vegas. I left that town

six months later, a little wiser, a little more humble, and a lot skinnier. Plus

a few scars on my head to remind

me of the “good time” that I had there. My destination, Peoria, AZ,

to enter in a rehab program. I wasn’t

there long though before I became disheartened and asked my brother to buy me a plane ticket to come up to Alaska. Almost immediately I fell back into the lifestyle that had become the bane of my existence. Drinking and drugging. I entered the “NewLife” Discipleship Training program at The Rescue Mission in the middle

part of 2007. After what I like to refer to as “false starts”, I nd myself settling in, growing more comfortable with my sobriety, and more importantly, growing closer to God. I’ve still got a long way to go though, in both my sobriety, and my knowledge of Him, but at least now, I’m traveling in the right direction. I’ve never been a religious person, and have always had trouble with the concept of a God of the universe. But through my studies here at the Mission, I’ve come to believe that such a God is not only possible but quite probable. I often pray that He would reveal himself to me in

a way that I could recognize and

understand, so that I would know He

is present in my life and that He is

God. By faith……………

May God Bless You All

“The Collapsible Man”

He is present in my life and that He is God. By faith…………… May God Bless


Living Memorials

Do You Remember?

If you do let me hear from you!

My Jesus, I Love Thee

My Jesus, I love thee, I know thou art mine. For Thee all the follies of sin I resign; My gracious Redeemer, My Savior art Thou, If ever I loved Thee, my Jesus, ‘tis now.

.touch lives as they honor the memory of loved ones and friends. In Memory of Esperanza M. Casas Frank L. Casas Martha Cashen In Memory of Mickey Robert Dinsmore, II John and Donna Poff In Memory of Elvin Jackson Etta M. Schandelmeier In Memory of Alvin Syren Mr. and Mrs. Sy Syren In Memory of Dave Traver Etta M. Schandelmeier

by by by I love Thee, because Thou hast loved me, And purchased my pardon
I love Thee, because Thou hast loved me,
And purchased my pardon on Calvary’s tree;
I love Thee for wearing the thorns on Thy brow
If ever I loved Thee, my Jesus, ‘tis now.
I’ll love Thee in life, I will love Thee in death,
And praise Thee as long as Thou lendest me breath;
And say when the death dew lies cold on my brow
If ever I loved Thee, my Jesus, ‘tis now.
In Honor of
Dr. Richard Newman
Arlene Manook
In mansions of glory and endless delight,
I’ll ever adore Thee in heaven so bright,
I’ll sing with the glittering crown on my brow,
If ever I loved Thee, my Jesus, ‘tis now.
Let Love Live Through Your
Special Gift
Our Prayer of Thanks
A very good way of remembering a departed friend or
loved one or to honor someone that is special to you,
giving a memorial gift to the Anchorage Gospel Rescue
Mission in the name of that person is a very personal,
lasting expression of your love. Your thoughtful
remembrances can have eternal value when invested in
the lives of people.
your will don’t lose it!

You need a will. Don’t wait too late and let others make decisions for you. This is a very important decision for you to consider. You should have professional help or advice. We cannot help you with this. But we can send you a brochure that may help you if you request it.

In preparing your will or estate, please remember the Anchorage Gospel Rescue Mission

We humble bow before you Lord On this Thanksgiving Day, To lift our prayers of gratitude For all Your caring ways, As You have blessed us abundantly, Lord, Let us remember, too, That we should share with those in need As You would have us do. Around this festive table today Are those we hold most dear, And in our midst Your, presence, Lord, Seems so very near. We are thankful for this land we love, For sod, and sky and tree For Pilgrims who braved unknown seas That all may worship free. We are thankful for each blessing, Lord, You send along our way; But may our greater “thanks” be shown In praising You each day.

Used with permission

The End of an Era

Although all of the Graduation Ceremonies held at the Mission are important milestones in the live of our Disciples; the one celebrated on the 10 th of October was even more special in that it symbolizes the end of one chapter and the start of a new chapter in the history of the Rescue Mission. Since its conception in 1965 the Anchorage Gospel Rescue Mission has had a 12 month program to help end the cycle of homelessness in the Anchorage community. Through the years the name of this program has changed but the core value has always remained the same. Jesus Christ is the only way! Like the name the method of directing men to this important truth has also changed over the years. New counseling techniques have come and gone, Program Directors and their individual philosophies have come and gone, Executive Directors and their varying degree of commitment to excellence have come and gone, the secular establishment has increased its efforts to extinguish Gods word in our society, and the community’s view of homeless men, women, and children have taken a radical turn for the worse. As a result of all of these variables most Missions across the country have gravitated from 12 to 24 month programs in an attempt to give those men who are actively seeking Christ an opportunity to build an even stronger spiritual foundation then before. Our Executive Director, Brother Don, has expressed his vision for a more object orientated training program from years. I shall not speculate on why he felt the time was right when a little over a year ago he instructed me to develop and implement a 24 month Discipleship Training Program for the Rescue Mission. That program is now fully in place and the Graduation Ceremony held on October, 10, 2008 was the last 12 month graduate the Anchorage Gospel Rescue Mission will produce. The end of an Era!

We no longer consider ourselves a rehabilitation program or a recovery program. Most of the men who come to our door have never been habilitated therefore rehabilitation is not possible. Most of the men who come to our door have never been healthy in body, spirit, and mind at the same time therefore recovery is not possible. What we are now focusing on is Training men in the ways of Christ and this begins with restoring a broken relationship with Christ. The rst phase of our training will focus on the Disciples identity. To learn who we are in Christ Jesus, to learn new ways of relating to ourselves and others, to recognize destructive behaviors, and to take ownership of our behavior. The new Disciples are encouraged to adjust and settle into their new community and to set new goals consistent with Discipleship training. The second phase is purging. Disciples will learn to recognize false beliefs, negative behaviors, and critical thinking errors and the effect they’ve had on our lives. The Third phase, Freedom, is designed to help the Disciple recognize, understand, and become empowered by the Holy Spirit. The fourth phase, Stewardship, will help Disciples with Money Management Skills classes in order to recognize, obedience to Christ can be tested by how we handle money, Money must be controlled or it will control us, God is pleased with regular, consistent giving. The Disciple will be instructed in résumé writing, and how to attain gainful employment. The fth and nal phase, Transition, will help Disciples to establish a life outside the Mission. Jesus encourages all believers to grow in relationship, commitment, and obedience to Him. This is the essence of how to live a Christian life. Our relationship, commitment, and obedience are done out of love, not constraint. When a Disciple leaves the Mission he will, through the power of Christ, be a new man. A Christian man of integrity, honor, and dignity who will not shy away from making the right decisions even if those decisions cost him something in the end,

Anchorage Gospel Rescue Mission P.O. Box Here is my support gift: For Credit Card Donations:
Anchorage Gospel Rescue Mission P.O. Box
Here is my support gift:
For Credit Card Donations:
Food and Shelter:
I would like to charge my total donation of $
Facilities Maintenance:
Check One: Visa M/C Am/Ex
$46.25 For 25 Meals
$74.00 For 40 Meals
$132.20 For 72 Meals
$277.50 For 150 Meals
Card Number
Exp. Date:
I Will Pray for this Ministry.
All credit card information is kept in strict confi dence
Make checks payable to the Anchorage Gospel Rescue Mission
You will receive a receipt.
Please send this coupon with your donations.


Our Ministry of Is to The least The last The lost rescue
Our Ministry of
Is to
The least
The last
The lost

Anchorage Gospel Rescue Mission

Board of Trustees

Ed Shelton (President) Bob Collins ( Vice President/treasure) Enoch Adams (Secretary) Mark Soquet


Cliff Hodgins Rev. Willard leisy Advisory Board:

Paul Kelly

Rev. Don Bettis, Exec. Dir. Charlotte Bettis, Asst. Dir.

MEMBER Association of Gospel Missions An association of Rescue Ministries rescue
Association of Gospel
An association of Rescue Ministries

Chapel Services for November






















Abbot Loop


















of God









Church of God of Prophecy







Assembly of

Church of










































New Light





In His Name




Greg Grebe











Nightly Services 7:30 pm to 8:30 pm





The Anchorage Gospel Rescue Mission is a Non-Pro t, Non-Denominational organization. We receive NO municipal, state or federal funds. We are not a United Way Agency. Your nancial support and In-Kind donations make it possible for us to provide for the poor, needy and homeless people in our community. Also, your donations allow us to provide a Drug and Alcohol Recovery program. All Donations are fully tax deductible. We will give you a receipt for your donation.

deductible. We will give you a receipt for your donation. Anchorage Gospel rescue Mission A Ministry




Mission A Ministry of Rescue & Recovery

Gospel rescue Mission A Ministry of Rescue & Recovery news rescue GOD BLESS AMERICA
news rescue
Mission A Ministry of Rescue & Recovery news rescue GOD BLESS AMERICA


of Rescue & Recovery news rescue GOD BLESS AMERICA Visit us Visit us at:

2823 E. Tudor Rd. Anchorage, AK 99507

P.O. Box 230510•Anchorage, AK•99523-0510•(907) 563-5603