Friday’s Weekend Column
About a Minnesota Man Exploring Life in the South

Something Really Good
by James Glaser
May 25, 2007

This last weekend Wanda invited me to go with her to the Lighthouse Children's Home for their School and Awards Banquet. The Home was started 30 years ago by Billy Hudson, a Tallahassee policeman, who had picked up a couple of homeless teenage girls, and with the help of some of the people from his church, he built a home that gives teen girls who need it, a place to start their lives over again.

Thirty years later, Brother Billy, as he is affectionately called today, is the President of the Board, and the head basketball coach for the 28 girls housed at the home he started. Besides basketball and school, the girls of the Lighthouse have a very fine singing group that tours the South East, singing hymns for any Christian Church that requests them.

Now this is pretty interesting. I learned that in the thirty years of working to build this girl's home, Mr.Billy Hudson has never taken a salary, and I bet during those first years he pitched in a lot of his own money to keep things going. The man is humble, and he and his wife are devoted to the girls.

During the dinner, we sat across a table from a Mr. Galloway. He is in his 70's and has worked for the home for years. When he first worked there, so did his wife. She passed away a few years ago, and he stayed on working there. The man has worked at youth Christian homes his whole life, and when they presented an award to him, all the girls cheered. They cheered for Brother Billy too when he was presented with an award from the girls, "to the world's best coach."

The girls seemed genuinely happy, and you could tell that they had formed a real family there, that they liked each other. The girls sang for us and got to sing a few numbers that were a bit up tempo, and they liked that. I didn't get the impression that any of these girls would be going on to a musical career, but their voices worked well together, and they had a real confidence in their singing. I am sure that will help them when they go on. Many of the girls go on to college, and the home continues to help them after high school graduation

It was a fine afternoon, and I must say I shed a few tears as Brother Billy shared his pride in these fine young women. This year the basketball team was 23 and 4, making it to the State Tournament. Not bad for a school with a total enrolment of 28.

The home is supported by many denominations of the Christian faith, and there were people from many churches sharing fellowship and dinner that afternoon. If you click on the Lighthouse, you will be able to hear the girls sing and read all about the home Brother Billy helped build for them.

"The Lighthouse Children's Home"
"A Christian home providing a second chance for teen girls"

I am getting ready to head up to Reston, Virginia for the Future of Freedom Foundation's conference on foreign policy and civil liberties. The brochures say, "with the aim of raising people's vision to restoring our nation's founding principles of a limited-government constitutional republic." That sounds interesting, and I hope to learn how we can do that.

The Foundation states as its mission, "The mission of The Future of Freedom Foundation is to advance freedom by providing an uncompromising moral and economic case for individual liberty, free markets, private property, and limited government."

There will be 24 speakers. Some of them being Laurence Vance, Daniel Ellsberg, Ron Paul, Lew Rockwell, Justin Raimondo, Jacob Hornberger, and what is nice is that there will be a question and answer period after each speaker.

I am driving up and back as I want to see more of the Southeast, and on the way back I am going to look for local saw mills. I want to buy native wood to work with, and most native trees are not sold at lumber stores. You can also learn a lot about what the wood is like from the local people who cut it and get it ready for market.

Wanda is driving up to Virginia with me, but she is flying out of there for a business trip, and I will have to drive back by myself, with no interpreter. That could make some of my stops at saw mills very interesting.

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