The Rotary Club of

Ojai Rotary Reminder Newsletter
January 8th, 2021

Carl A. Gross, Editor

January is Vocational Service Month
Are you an established professional who wants to make positive changes in your community and the world? Our club members are dedicated people who share a passion for community service and friendship. 
Our 1.2 million-member organization started with the vision of one man—Paul P. Harris. The Chicago attorney formed one of the world’s first service organizations, the Rotary Club of Chicago, on 23 February 1905 as a place where professionals with diverse backgrounds could exchange ideas and form meaningful, lifelong friendships. Rotary’s name came from the group’s early practice of rotating meetings among the offices of each member.
In the Beginning…
Our Funbassador, Patricia Anderson greeted the throng, all 6 or more feet apart, but together in fellowship and goodwill.
In President Michael’s absence, President-Elect Betsy Watson stepped in and ably chaired the Zoom quilt of Rotarians and guests.  Great job, Betsy!
Deirdre Daly led the Pledge of Allegiance to this great Nation. 
Marty Babayco gave an insightful and heartfelt Invocation:
Being asked to do this invocation for the new year has not been an easy task for me.
This last year has really put us all to the test – as we decided on how to stay safe and healthy, and how to connect with our loved ones we could not touch.  As we questioned what is important to us, and asked what we believed, and what we want our future to become. 
It's dark in this country right now.
The coronavirus and its aggressive consequences have truly invaded our lives this last year – changing how we see the world, how we interact with the world, and how we must now live our lives in the future.
And with recent rise of Covid cases in our area, like many of you, my anxiety level is heightened every time I encountered someone I don’t know – fearing every stranger as a potential carrier of the virus. This virus has stolen one of our basic human instincts - trust.
As a result of this ongoing pandemic, our nation, our local community, and our neighbors are suffering. Families are threatened and disillusioned with the loss of jobs, the anxiety of food insecurity, and fear of losing one’s home. There seems to be less hope in the world.
It's dark in this country right now.
The political events of this last year and especially what transpired on Wednesday in our Nation’s Capital have filled me with such sadness. Over the last several days, I’ve been horrified, angry, and disheartened.
We as a nation, are now more conscious of the deep divisions that are tearing us apart. We realize the need to re-examine our history and our beliefs and biases. Even if we feel that those divisions may not exist in our life, their absence doesn’t mean that they don’t exist.  It is a time to confront and thoughtfully understand systematic racism, hate, classism and division. It is time to be respectful, to listen, and be part of a dialogue that hopefully leads to new understandings and new healings.
But in spite of what I see and hear, I pray that our circumstances don’t define us, and our fears don’t stop us from continuing to work to better our community and our fellow men and women.  I continue to pray for peace, healing, and understanding in the world.
Because I know all of you, as fellow Rotarians, I know that we can change the trajectory of our circumstances and push away those dark clouds - being the helpers, providing the service, honoring and encouraging those who continue to do good in the world, and demonstrating how to live our lives in the service of others.
It may be dark in this country right now.
But Scripture (Psalms 30:5) tells us that while "weeping may endure for a night, joy comes in the morning."   For you and your families:  May this New Year be a time of growth for us, A time of welcoming our graces and gifts, A time for forgiving freely and unconditionally, A time for growing in virtue and goodness.  May this New Year find us committing again to a year of service to our community and to the world.  And most importantly, let us rise up, greet the morning and each new day this coming year, and welcome the challenges of this moment – together.
Many thanks to Deirdre for the Pledge, Marty for the Invocation, Tara for facilitating our Zoom meeting, Patricia for being our greeter, and Carl Gross for serving as Reminder Editor.
Visiting Rotarians and Guests
It was so nice to see Dr. Bob Skankey pop in from his Airstream “cocoon” somewhere in Arizona and offering his assessment: “Life is Good!”
Special guest Marion St. James was introduced by Marc Whitman and we welcomed Michelle Sherman.
Upcoming Programs:
Therese Brown presented the upcoming programs:
January 15thRobin Gerber  Women Business Pioneers: Katherine Graham
January 22ndKevin Daly (Dierdre’s brother)  What’s up with Brexit?
Thanks to Therese and her crew for producing timely and engaging programs through this year!
Mike Weaver was happy to announce approval of a major grant in support of education of a physician from Botswana.  He observed: “It changed her life”.
Dierdre told us to check our emails for our ½ year dues bill.  She indicated that there are special rates for New Generation members (less than 40), family rates, and Foundation participants.
Bob Davis mentioned that CoVid is not the only disease out there.  He urged us to contribute to Polio Plus if we haven’t done so this year.
Dr. Tiffany Morse announced a Community Event on Martin Luther King day at 6:30 PM.  It will address diversity, equity, and inclusion.  “A place at the table.”  Further information forthcoming.
Sid Cohen celebrated his birthday on January 10th.
Ojai Rotary Humor
Fining—Cindy Fring
Cindy gleefully led the extraction of monetary largesse from the membership.
There were no confessions, so we went to the fining:
Patricia Anderson, Terry Beckett, and Al West were grilled mercilessly about Ojai Rotary Trivia.
We found out about scheduling divorce attorneys for a Valentine’s Day program, who fell asleep during meetings, who shook Kissinger’s hand, who went on vacation after 2 months as President, and 3 felons who were in the Club at the same time.  We found out who stood by President Bush for a photo op, who was a trained opera singer in our Club, and who are married members of our Club.  For the answers, you had to be there!
The Program: CoVid Vaccines—Dr. Michael Wasserman
Therese introduced our speaker, Dr. Wasserman, Past President of the California Long-Term Care Medicine (CALTCM) and geriatrician.
He reviewed the new CoVid Vaccines available, the distribution strategies, and current status.  He addressed the concerns about the vaccine (Is it too rushed to have on the market? Is getting the vaccine currently make me a guinea pig?) 
The reasons to get the vaccine included protection (95%), keeping residents safe, and to set an example.
The vaccine does not contain the virus, it is a small strand of messenger DNA made by newer technology which has been utilized for the past 10 years in developing anticancer medications and cannot cause infection.  The side effects are local soreness at injection site, 24-48 hours of possible headache, muscle aches, and low-grade fever.  The symptoms are usually mild and self-limiting.  FDA guidelines for vaccines were strictly followed in the manufacture and testing of this vaccine.
For the actual presentation, please click on this link. 
Final Thoughts
Betsy closed with the following quote:
“When things change inside you, things change around you.”
Stay safe, wear a mask when out, keep your distancing,  and get the vaccine when you can.

You are invited to visit us at an upcoming meeting.

Please add to your safe sender list or address book.
To view our privacy policy, click here.
102-2060 Winston Park Drive, Oakville, ON, L6H 5R7
Russell Hampton
ClubRunner Mobile