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May 200
3 - Nr. 5


The Editor
Meiner Mutter
Ich weiss es noch
Mother's Day
Dear Mothers
KW and Beyond
Mayday at Concordia
Herwig Wandschneider
Dick reports...
Sybille reports
Ham Se det jehört?
City of Glass
New Bells Consecrated
Rostock Olympic Bid
Elizabeth Kuehn
Opera York at Maxim's
Michael Schade's Solo
The New COC
10 Years Forget-me-nots
150 Year Duneden

Community Matters!

  Our community does matter. Whatever we do as individuals or as a group has a ripple effect somewhere else. Often we do not think about it at all, do not even recognize the connection until someone makes a point of it.

Every year we are given fine examples of leadership or the setting of good examples, or celebrate noteworthy anniversaries that speak of perseverance, endurance, loyalty and commitment. Sometimes, sadly, we wait too long to acknowledge the contributions of others and only remember when they are no longer around. But even that is better than never acknowledging the good deeds of others.

Here then are a few instances worth mentioning.


Canadian-Austrian Leadership

Christine MeyerWhen Christine Meyer took over the presidency of the Canadian Austrian Society from long time president John Raschke she was already familiar with the organisation’s activities. She simply did more of the things close to her heart, namely Austrian Canadian relations. People and cultures have much to share and she always supported that. She is also a great supporter of the young people’s and student exchange between the two nations. And when the big flood hit Europe last year and also devastated large parts of Austria, she sprang into action instantly to solicit support wherever she could for the purpose of helping. With her efforts she managed to persuade people to show their support and CAD 55,000.00 were raised.

Thus it is no surprise that the President of the Republic of Austria, Thomas Klestil, decided to bestow the Decoration of Merit in Gold onto Christine Meyer. The actual decoration took place after the annual membership meeting April 25th, 2003, at the National Club and was carried out by Ambassador Wendelin Ettmayer, who was full of praise for Christine Meyer and her commitment to Austrian Canadian relations and her charitable activities.

We add our congratulations to the many others.


German Canadian Club Hansa celebrates
45th Anniversary

Festive crowd  (German Canadian Club Hansa)The festively decorated hall had not seen so many guests at this annual event for a few years. This time however, it seemed as though everyone was at hand that was anybody. Animated chatter greeted us as we arrived and sat down to a well-prepared meal from the club’s own kitchen. Catering manager and cook were later both presented with a bouquet of flowers for their regular contributions to all of our well-being.

The Hansa Choir  (German Canadian Club Hansa)

Club President Reiner Walter & his wife Irmgard  (German Canadian Club Hansa)For any ethnic club 45 years are quite an accomplishment. Founded by post WWII immigrants, it shows that it only took a few years for the group to be stable enough to think of community events. The many volunteers and Boards of Directors with their Presidents, the Women’s Auxiliary, the grounds keepers and volunteer builders, they all Kudos for Karin & Vlasta  (German Canadian Club Hansa)can take a bow to have helped to establish this Brampton institution, that even the local politicians do not want to miss. Thus the Mayor of Brampton sent someone to bestow a plaque onto the club for its community merit. Introduced by Lou Wegner several people were called to be thanked specifically, as every year. At the Brandt table  (German Canadian Club Hansa)This year an honorary membership was bestowed on Ida Brandt of Brandt Meat for fostering the German culture. She had turned up with her whole clan and some friends.

Dr. Klaus Rupprecht & Lou Wegner  (German Canadian Club Hansa)Consul General Dr. Klaus Rupprecht came for the first time to the club and was quite impressed with the facility and what the members had done with it. He publicly praised the clubs work and emphasized its importance. All together now!  (German Canadian Club Hansa)

Framed were the formal activities by the recently much improved Hansa Choir with wonderful songs.


The Golden Keys  (German Canadian Club Hansa)

After the official part was over the Golden Keys from Kitchener entertained with dance music to everyone’s liking and the Weiss Blau Dancers, reminiscent of Bavarian customs, young, younger and youngest, entertained with dancing and cowbell symphonies. Later in the evening the Almrausch Dancers came out in their beautiful costumes of Germany’s alpine region, just to prove again that one does not have to be from a Hanse City to be part of the Hansa Club.

Dancing & Music

Like a pro!

Big steps...

Little cowbells

Cowbell symphony


...and modern dance

Heidi's Almrausch family

The Almrausch Dance Group


45 Happy Years  (German Canadian Club Hansa)Happy Anniversary  (German Canadian Club Hansa)There are two other events that took place along side and have to be mentioned. The children of Willy and Renate thought it to be a great idea to celebrate their parent’s wedding anniversary at the club, since it also was a 45th anniversary.

Lucrezia & Robert, Petra & Peter, and Rudi went all out to make this a very special occasion for their still very youthful parents. So many years of working, raising and nurturing a family deserve special congratulations in our day and age!

Faces & tables


The other item put a bitter drop of sadness into our cups. Already as we arrived I noticed the club’s flag flying at half-mast. And when before the meal a minute of silence was called for to remember Irmgard Bunge, one of the past president’s (Henry Bunge) wife and herself a long time president of the Women’s Auxiliary, I understood why. We would remember her more at length on the following Monday, at church, at the cemetery and again at the club. Throughout the evening 2 empty seats were the steady reminders that something was missing in our community.

The evening was not loud, never really is, but I felt that just a small damper had been put on the proceedings by the knowledge of this loss. Otherwise the celebration was a wonderful and fitting celebration of what is best in this community, with this club, the Hansa Club.

And in the end it is clear: if any one member of a group does exceptionally well and contributes to the group’s survival as a whole, then we all do so much better, we all benefit, we all are stronger and better for it. And if one of us falls down then we all fall down just a little bit. For that very reason alone it is important that we should strive to get along and help one another, rather than hinder or hurt one another.

It could all be so simple, if…yes, if…

Community does matter!

Sybille Forster-Rentmeister


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