Dorene Gleason got a hold of me to go to work with her this morning for just a few hours. I was super excited to see exactly what she does! She told me that it would be a total gamble to figure out what would be going on when I came by. I had no idea that it would be so informative and I am amazed at her work. Dorene sent me directions to a blue metal building and she would be in the office. This building is in between Sheridan and Willamina off of Rock Creek Road. I found my way, not exactly knowing what I was getting into. I climbed the steps to the office and was warmly greeted by Dorene and the office cat Oakley.
The office is a warm purple color and i guessed right away that this design is Dorene’s doing. Within seconds of being in the door, Dorene is answering phones, answer questions for her co workers and acting as a sounding board for her boss George.
We then sat down to talk about what these folks do in this place and Dorene’s job. Turns out, this place is home of many different businesses, most have to do with wood. This is home of Northwest Gazebos, Oregon fuel and firewood, Custom dry kilns (to heat treat wood and dry out wood), and to do other custom jobs. Through Dorene’s time in this place, she has also helped the business acquire and manage rental properties, manages the vineyard that the business owns (table grapes), has helped with goat rentals (organic lawnmowers) and has organized a Saturday market out of the parking lot. I am sure that I am missing other businesses as well! So when I asked what Dorene does, she replies, “I am the office!”
But she is sooooo much more than just the office. Dorene has a HUGE heart and so her call has become to help out staff with paperwork, family troubles, training others with job skills, filling out tax forms, figuring out immigration paperwork, talking with others who come through the door, being hospitable during break times and lunch times and the list goes on. She is family to all who are here! She has become the cornerstone in this place and the one who makes things happen. Dorene also amazes me with her willingness to try new things. When I asked her about this she said, “You know, if we had stayed with just gazebos we would not have survived but we have to try out things to see if they will work. Keeps things interesting.”
Dorene is doing what we in the church should also be doing! We talked about how if just one idea sticks and succeeds, then they are all a success…wow, that will preach!!! This is definitely a way to do ministry!
Before I get too excited, Dorene also gave me a wonderful tour. We walked around were folks were working with the wood…
And I got to see the kilns as well as all of the sawdust and extra wood…
If you have any wood needs, this is the place to be (or it turns out any other ideas you might want to try out). I loved every minute of my visit today! Thanks Dorene! Thanks for opening my eyes to a reminder of the church!