Kari Borgen

By Lisa Britton

For the Baker City Herald

Ian Howarth never knows what will happen when he shows up at the Northeast Oregon Compassion Center, where he serves on the board of directors.

Especially these days with the new firewood ministry going strong.

"I show up and he says 'grab some gloves,' " Howarth says of Cliff Cole, the center's director.

This new ministry - one of 14 programs - started last year when the Compassion Center was offered free firewood from willows that needed to be removed on private land.

"It mushroomed from there," Howarth says. "People heard we were clearing out undesirable firewood."

They ended up with more than 450 cords of wood.

The center's board members cut the wood, and then received assistance from a Powder River Correctional Facility work crew.

More information about the Compassion Center is available on their website, http://neoregoncompassioncenter.org/ or by calling 541-523-9845.

The center is located at 1250 Hughes Lane, in a wing of the Nazarene Church.