Elaine Klaassen

Spirit and Conscience, columns by Elaine Klaassen

Elaine started at Southside Pride in 1996 selling ads, maintaining the religion calendar and writing articles that eventually became a column called Spirit and Conscience. Since 2011 she has been the paper’s managing editor.


BY ELAINE KLAASSEN Thirteen years ago, within a period of 18 months, Mary Bergerson’s losses were more than anyone could imagine. Her mom died of brain cancer, her soldier husband took his own life, her youngest brother died suddenly, her step-children were taken away because her disability eliminated her right…

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Gust of Wind (mysteries)

BY ELAINE KLAASSEN Many years ago a little piano student of mine wanted to play a scary Halloween song. When we couldn’t find anything he liked, I wrote him a simple piece about the howling wind, the gusting, cracking wind, a windy Halloween night, when the trees groan and rattle…

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A conversation about poverty

Editor’s note: An article by Joe Selvaggio, founder of Project for Pride in Living and MicroGrants, was published in the Nov. Nokomis and Dec. Phillips/Powderhorn and Riverside editions suggesting ways to solve the problem of poverty in Minnesota.  Elaine Klaassen, managing editor of Southside Pride, responded to the article in…

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The Light and Heavy Chorale (earthbound)

BY ELAINE KLAASSEN Dust to dust. Whatever. Life is hard. Fires, storms, early deaths, accidents, failures, let-downs, rejections, abandonments, wars. Life goes on. We make our chips and dip, fire up the pickup truck, shingle the roof and sew our wedding dresses. We still smile at the sunrise and hold hands at…

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How do you earn your way out of poverty?

It’s good to open a discussion on poverty. I appreciate Joe Selvaggio’s article in that regard. However, his tone makes one think that he lives miles and miles from the people who find themselves, for many, many different reasons, without the means to survive. His deprecating tone is disturbing. And…

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SPIRIT AND CONSCIENCE: The Church’s ongoing reformation

The mural on Trinity’s building at 20th and Riverside Is filled with biblical figures. The artist, Larry Rostad, wrote: “We have represented the extended family of faith with paint, in mural form …. Our hope is that Trinity’s mural will contribute to our neighborhood; may visible hand-painted images help reveal the INVISIBLE things of the Spirit.”

BY ELAINE KLAASSEN Cultural Uniqueness of Trinity Lutheran Congregation When I talked with Jane Buckley-Farlee, co-pastor of Trinity Lutheran Congregation, we discovered she had been at that church as long as I’ve been at Southside Pride—21 years. I’ve been reporting on religious groups, mostly churches, during all this time; overall,…

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Fly By Night will capture your heart

BY ELAINE KLAASSEN I wouldn’t go so far as to say that I HATE musicals, but they are definitely not my favorite genre. I’ve heard a lot of people say they don’t much care for musicals, so for that crowd I’d say, “Go see ‘Fly By Night’ at the Jungle…

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Meditation on disappointment

Southside Pride and Pulse, August 2007 What do you do with enormous disappointment? What do you do when you just couldn’t have something you really, really wanted. I don’t know. Rarely do I take big leaps—mostly to avoid disappointment, I suppose. But this time, since “I’m not getting any younger,…

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