September 21, 2016
‘Wake up! It is here; it is now’
There is an epidemic spreading in the Lehigh Valley. It attacks primarily women, teenagers and children, especially the most vulnerable. Its victims come from all walks of life and socio-economic backgrounds. It is highly infectious, but too often goes undetected. To date, prevention has been mostly futile, and cures have been limited to a relative few. It is not the Zika or Ebola viruses, but it is just as insidious and horrific. This epidemic is sex trafficking, defined by the Federal Government as the illegal trade in which a commercial sex act is induced by force, fraud or coercion, or in which the person induced to perform such act has not attained 18 years of age. Fed by pornography and greed, empowered by drugs, and transmitted through the Internet, this contagion is an increasing threat in the Lehigh Valley.
Part 1 of a 3-part series by Carole Gorney
Jane Guerio is the founder and president of Glory House, which promotes spiritual restoration and economic empowerment for women getting out of captivity, abuse or homelessness. Guerio is also a survivor of sex trafficking. This is her story.
I was 30 and I was abducted from Eighth Street and Turner in Allentown. I was a drug addict and a prostitute. It was Christmas morning. I had stolen a can of chicken noodle soup from the 7-Eleven, but I didn’t have a can opener. This big SUV drove up. One man. He said, “You won’t have to do anything the rest of the day. Come with me.”
By Carole Gorney
Re-purpose, reuse and recycle
The Beleno Spiritual Healing Center is open for business at 1019 W. Broad St., and for owner Carrie Beleno the progression to this point has seemed to be her destiny. As a retired educator, she says a former client inspired her to step into the spiritual avocation.“I needed to step into what my purpose was and own it,” says Beleno. Photo: Natural light floods the upstairs Yoga room as Carrie Beleno relaxes quietly at her center.
By Dana Grubb
Frank Flisser: Like father, like son
The Rev. Frank Flisser was the pastor at St. John’s Windish Lutheran Church, located on Bethlehem’s Southside, for 35 years. He also served on the zoning hearing board, and for 35 years, with the Bethlehem Housing Authority. While this community-minded cleric attended meetings, his son Frank started hanging around with a short but determined basketball player named John Morganelli and another kid just down the street named Bob Donchez. Photo: Frank Flisser, flanked by wife Mary Beth and son Tom. Flisser as Northampton County’s first council clerk, a position he held for 36 years before retiring last year.
By Bernie O’Hare
Gonzalez newest Valley Iron Chef
A new Iron Chef was crowned at the Great Allentown Fair this summer after a grueling schedule of cook-offs featuring some of the best chefs in the Lehigh Valley. Six chefs competed in the final round, and the contest came down to two finalists: Cristian Gonzalez, executive sous chef at the Hamilton in Allentown; and Adam Boyd, chef de cuisine at h20 Kitchen, Wyomissing. The pair were given a basket of ingredients to use to prepare one entrée from either pork or alligator meat. Photo: The Hamilton’s Executive Sous chef Cristia Gonzalez walked off, or rather, cooked-off with the title of Iron Chef at this year’s competition at the Great Allentown Fair. He beat out five other chefs to take the title.
By Carole Gorney
The versatility of SPAM, the ubiquitous canned meat from Hormel, was put to the test during the “Great American SPAM Championship” at the Allentown Fair. Five children and 16 adults vied for cash prizes with their sweet or savory original recipes made from at least one 12-ounce can of any variety of the precooked product. Entries ranged from SPAM salad to appetizers and a chocolate dessert. They were judged on the creativity of their theme (40 percent), taste and presence of the SPAM flavor (40 percent), ease and clarity of the recipe (10 percent), and presentation and visual appeal (10 percent). Photo: Judges Harvey Emert, Catasauqua, and Bill White, Allentown Morning Call columnist, are hard at work tasting all the SPAM entries. This is White’s 15th year as a fair culinary judge. “When I heard about the SPAM contest I just had to do it,” White said. “My mother made SPAM.”
By Carole Gorney
Rachael Hoffman from Slatington tries her hand at milking a “cow.” The experience left her “udderly” amazed.
By Ed Courrier
Kassandra Diehl of Coopersburg and her son Blake have their first camel ride. The popular camel rides attracted a steady line of fair-goers.
By Tim Gilman
Gerrymandering: Current system is a mess
Whether they love her or hate her, few would dispute that Democrat Lisa Boscola is very popular in her state senatorial district, which includes Bethlehem. Some of her Bethlehem constituents may actually love her. But leaders in the state house and senate? Not so much. “I swear, if there was a bridge you could build to New Jersey, they’d put me there,” she only half-jokes. That bridge might be under construction right now. Boscola is the prime sponsor of a senate bill (SB484) that would eliminate gerrymandering in Pennsylvania by establishing an independent citizens’ commission to draw the boundary lines for Congressional and state legislative seats every 10 years.
Part 2 of a 4-part series by Bernie O’Hare
Becahi-Liberty highlights week 5
All eyes will be focused on Bethlehem Area School District Stadium this Saturday afternoon when Bethlehem Catholic hosts Liberty at 2 p.m. It’s fair to say that calling this week four tilt a ‘big game’ is an understatement, as the rivalry between both schools is real. “All the talk or stuff on Twitter this week doesn’t matter,” said Becahi head coach Kyle Haas. “This is a huge rivalry and there’s going to be a lot of emotion going into it, but the only thing that matters for us is execution.”
By Peter Car
To be Latin and an artist
“Our America: The Latino Presence in American Art,” a traveling exhibit organized by the Smithsonian American Art Museum, through Oct. 2, Allentown Art Museum of the Lehigh Valley, Fifth and Court streets, Allentown, includes 89 contemporary artworks by 71 artists in the Museum’s Trexler Hall, Scheller, Rodale, and Fowler Galleries. What does a Latino artist do when uprooted and transported to the United States’ landscape of political structures? They make their presence known through the arts. “Our America” is a perspective on contemporary art and artists’ approach to address the political issues of the day affecting Latino communities.
By Nelson Quinones
Bethlehem: Just Borne ‘tarnished’ in community, says labor rep
Bethlehem: HARB approves CFS, Buxmont signage
Fountain Hill: New officer welcomed; plants rejected
Northampton County: No grounds for dismissal of county employee
Northampton County: Council to hold ‘remote’ meetings
Saucon Valley: High school principal resigns abruptly
Valley: TPA presents family scholarships
Around town community calendar
Center for Animal Health and Welfare
High school news reports
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