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Speaker to question why mainline churches helped Bush win presidency

Church person of the year to be named

The Gorge Ecumenical Ministries (GEM) will hold its annual meeting on Sunday evening, Jan. 16, at the Soul Cafe, 416 Oak Ave., Hood River.

A free supper will be served at 5 p.m., with the program beginning at 6 p.m.

All members of the community are invited to attend.

The featured speaker of the evening is the Rev. Stephen Schafroth, who will address the controversial topic: "Why did the Mainline Churches Help Re-elect the President?"

The topic for the evening questions how it happened that the mainline churches seemed to vote against many of their traditional beliefs and values to re-elect the President.

Rev. Schafroth, of St. Paul's Episcopal Church in The Dalles, chairs the Public Policy Advisory Committee of the Ecumenical Ministries of Oregon (EMO) as well as the board of the Mid-Columbia Action Council which serves the poor in Hood River, Wasco and Sherman counties.

The Gorge Ecumenical Ministries (GEM) is composed of clergy and laypersons from 14 different churches and religious organizations in the Hood River - White Salmon area.

An an interfaith organization, GEM sponsors or lends support to many community projects like the FISH Food Bank, vacation Bible school, the annual CROP Walk, the new Habitat for Humanity chapter, the Thanksgiving Meal, the Christmas Basket Program, and LOGOS (a midweek children's ecumenical program).

In addition, at this annual meeting, GEM makes its "Church person of the Year" award to an outstanding member of the religious community. New GEM officers will also be introduced.

This will be the second successive year that the GEM annual meeting has been held at the Soul Cafe. Soul Cafe, a member of GEM, offers a free supper to members of the community every Sunday evening at 5 p.m., followed by an opportunity for discussion of current topics.


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