The CrossRoads Journal

Traditions, Trees and Testimonies

When I was quite a young lad, just old enough to hold a shovel made for grownups, my grandfather took me out on his property next to the road and we started digging holes. He could dig faster than me, of course, but digging holes in the dirt with my grandfather certainly was fun.

We dug four holes in a straight line. Well, he dug three and I dug one. Then we went back to the farmhouse and picked up little pine trees. They were all ready to plant in the holes, with a small piece of burlap covering the roots and tied around the skinny trunks. What fun! We planted the little trees, packed dirt into the holes, and watered them. A tradition was born.

Decades later, my father took my son out on the same property and found a place in the orchard to plant another tree. This willow tree honored the bride and groom soon to get married there, my son and his fianceĢ. The pine trees my grandfather and I planted were tall and mature.

Then, as my turn to be a grandfather came along, my father, my son, and I planted three trees to honor the young children in our family. When they are old enough to handle shovels, I will take the children out to dig holes and put little trees in them. The tradition will continue.

Recently CrossRoads Counseling Centers planted seventeen trees in Heman Park in University City. U-City is

where CrossRoads expanded counseling services to under-served families and individuals in 2019 and 2020. The trees were planted in honor of recent donors, including former clients, team members, a church pastor, school administrators, parents of team members, current board members, one past board president, and friends. New trees are taking root.

As CrossRoads continues to expand and grow, these trees will be a reminder of where we have been and where we are going. It is my sincerest hope that this new tradition will go on for decades to come, as CrossRoads continues to provide more counseling services where they are needed most in these difficult times. It is going to be a tradition.

Come with me to see the recently planted trees as they become fuller and taller. You can become part of the tradition too, and help plant more.