Rotary Club of Oak Bay
Bulletin, 18 August 2020
By Ron Cooley
 
President Steve and zoom master Joan opened our meeting. Steve teased those present by telling them of the current, very pleasant, temperature in Hawaii!  O Canada was presented as a video with the theme “We can Still be together.”  An excellent invocation was brought to us by Doris Lewis and it proved to be yet another profound thank you for all the opportunity that we as Rotarians have. 
 
Lorna Curtis reported on last Sunday’s Rotary Picnic held in her back yard. 17 people social distanced for lunch which was purchased from the Oak Bay Beach Hotel. Besides good social time ladder-ball and croquette were on the entertainment agenda. Clearly everyone had fun and the event was a great success.
Atam Uppal introduced our speaker John Hannes who is a member of the Rotary International staff, based in Evanston Illinois. His role is Club and District support with work on policy, resources, administration and online resources. John has Paul Harris +3 pin.
 
John’s topic encompassed his experience in Rotary and how it has allowed him to fulfill many of his goals.
John went to the RI Convention in Sydney Australia with the role of being the Convention Minute Host. This role gave him an opportunity to travel out of the USA and he obtained his first adult passport at age 30. His task was to interview people and capture special moments at the convention. He would film all day from 6.00am until 2.00pm and then edit his film down to a one-minute presentation every day. This was shown on the Convention On Line in the Virtual House of Friendship. John encouraged everyone to attend a convention and that, he said, would enhance their appreciation of everything that Rotary stands for and does in the world.
 
John told us that he felt very lucky to have a chance to work with Rotary. Having been born in 1984 at Mabalcat City, Pampanga, Philippines, he was adopted by a US service family who were stationed there for five years. The family all moved back to the USA in 1987.
 
Rotary offered him the opportunity to visit the Philippines.  He reached out to his birth mother telling her that he was very thankful for her difficult choice. His mother works the night shift at a hotel. He recalled how nervous he felt when meeting his mother, sisters and other family members
 
While he was in the Philippines, he met Keith & Pat from Big Hoop Charities and in doing so he was able to see how much small donations can achieve significant results.
 
John finished up by saying he hoped he would have an opportunity to share with us why Rotarians keep coming back to conventions.
Pete Lawrie thanked John for his inspiring message and good work at RI.
 
David was our Celebrations master. He fined anyone who ate their lunch with the mute button off, anyone who missed the 1st meeting in August and anyone who had not paid their annual dues on time. You were exempt if you attended the Community Concert or the picnic at Lorna’s. He requested that we make a donation to the club in lieu of no lunch costs.  Peter Lawrie has been married 49 years, Ali Edgell has been married for 17 years. Don O’Coffey corrected David’s claim that he is 85 and said he was actually 39. Looking good. No Happy or Sad dollars
 
Joan Firkins showed us a video of Jennifer Jones who will be Rotary International’s first ever woman president.  She is a Canadian from Windsor, Ontario.
The meeting was adjourned.
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