Auction Supports Christian Education

January 01, 2006 | Linda Klinger

Four years ago a board member, John Kurlinski, decided to initiate an event that would raise much-needed funds for Gem State Academy. “Other private schools raise a lot of money through auctions,” he said. “Why can’t we?”

David Kramer, a former Gem State Adventist Academy (GSAA) student back in the 1950s, is an auctioneer. When he heard that GSAA was considering an auction, he eagerly called and offered his auctioneering services.

Now, four years later, Kramer and his auctioneering team have raised more than $71,000 for GSAA and its feeder elementary schools. “I’m grateful that God can still use me!” he says.

This year’s “Light a Life” auction included more than 300 new and like-new items. Community business owners, alumni and friends of the school opened their hearts and provided a great array of items.

Lead items included Danny Amen’s (class of ’82) Jeep Cherokee and Jodi (Stephan) Fresk’s (class of ’86) Chevy Van. Mor Furniture for Less in Boise donated a leather sofa/love seat and a dining table with six chairs. Verlain Terrell, wife of the late Wayne Terrell (class of ’48) donated two nights at her condo in Sun Valley.

Among the 300 “Light a Life” bidders at this year’s auction was a real estate agent who moved to New Orleans after being devastated twice by hurricanes in Florida. He barely escaped Katrina. Now he and his young family are endeavoring to build a new life in Idaho’s Treasure Valley, and the “Light a Life” auction was able to assist them with their new start.

“It is exciting to see how God has brought people and businesses together,” says John Kurlinski. “I only envisioned a yearly fundraiser—not an auctioneering ministry or a ministry to hurricane victims. Isn’t God incredible! I can’t wait to see what He has in mind for next year.”