Jeanne Robertson poses with staff from Morrison Senior Living, who managed the event's meet-and-greet

Major event for Diakon’s 150th anniversary a success—and Left Brain bought way too many groceries ...

York, Pa.    Wednesday, October 31, 2018

2018 has not come to a close.

There are still Diakon 150th anniversary activities ahead. And we will continue to celebrate for some time to come. The milestone of one-and-one-half centuries of service comes but once.

Yet the anniversary’s major event is now done.

And we are pleased to report it was a success. Not only did the event, along with the rest of the anniversary celebration, raise needed funds for Diakon programs—and the anniversary-related fundraising campaign continues—but it filled the 1,262-seat Strand Theatre at the Appell Center for the Performing Arts in York, Pennsylvania.

She had numbered the list and he had brought home ... 42 bottles of 7Up

If there was a key message to nationally known humorist Jeanne Robertson’s performance, it was: Find the humor in life and in the situations in which we find ourselves.

Ms. Robertson told story after story that embodied that message, eliciting loud laughter throughout the theater. A favorite was the story of the numbered grocery-store list that she gave to her husband, whom she lovingly calls “Left Brain” because of his analytical mind, for ingredients for a pound cake. The penultimate account involved the list’s No. 7: a six-pack of 7Up ... and her realization that, for the first time in her life, she had numbered the list and he had brought home, in addition to No. 6 ... 30 pounds of sugar ... 42 bottles of 7Up.

“For the record,” she recounted him saying in a story she has told many times, including on YouTube, “I figured out what I had done, but by that time, she [the grocery-store clerk] was already ringing me up ... Don’t tell anyone!”

Jeanne Robertson on stage at York.

Jeanne Robertson on stage at York.

Other aspects of the 150th anniversary celebration have included:

  • Staff-appreciation events
  • Local program and senior living community celebrations that have included rededications to continuing service
  • Recognition of clients, residents and supporters
  • Appreciation certificates for Lutheran congregations and synods
  • The creation of a history booklet, a website, a video and multiple other publications, advertisements and collateral
  • Recognition of anniversary sponsors

Diakon arose in 1868 with the purchase of the Tressler Orphans Home in Loysville, Perry County, Pennsylvania, by the Lutheran Church. A few decades later, Lutherans founded the Topton Orphans Home in Berks County, Pennsylvania. In addition to the early focus on services for children and youths, both organizations later branched into senior care. 

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