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Cindy Goodrich

This page is just getting started but will have information about Cindy Goodrich, my wife, who died December 29, 2019.

I thought I would touch on a few things about Cindy and her activities in child education. We met in December 1969. I was in 10th grade and she was 11th. At that time she was thinking about getting a degree in elementary education and becoming a teacher. That was the only thing she mentioned to me along those lines. When we decided we wanted to get married she was somewhat happy to end those plans. I do not think she had any career plans to replace those. Since I was intending on a ten year educational experience to (hopefully) get a PhD in physics, specifically particle physics, she figured she would work to help with meeting needs until I was making money or grant/scholarship money would be sufficient to allow her to stop. She was interested in having children and being an at-home mom and wanted an agreement that would happen less than a year after I got my undergraduate degree.

I was not very far along into the university experience when some other things occurred which caused us to reconsider that course and we began to move towards areas of gospel ministry. We began some simple ministry activities of our own in 1973. In 1975 we began some regular services in Ames, Iowa. Cindy did classes with the few kids who attended those including our first two which were born in 1974 and 1977.

The church we now pastor begin late summer 1980. We got involved with it in November 1980 with me becoming part of the staff. We became the pastor’s in April 1985. Randi, our youngest daughter, played the part of Jesus in their first Christmas program in December being born in September. Cindy rather quickly got involved in doing things with kids there. They had not had much success in getting someone to head up the nursery and look after kids up to age 3 during service times so she did that. In that nursery, which was not much bigger than a storage closet, she talked to them, read Bible stories and other things. These were kids from a few months up to three years.

That church (Faith Christian Fellowship) moved to Elkhart and the present building, which was the Elkhart k-12 school building built in 1920, early in 1984. Enough work was done to it so that we could start meeting in it in June 1984. In the fall the first preschool class started with Cindy as teacher. There were five students which included our youngest daughter. Two of those students were at the memorial service January 4, 2020. The last day of Faith Promise Preschool was December 19, 2019 as Christmas break was starting. She was getting tired faster in early December. Our expectation was still to see her healed and she had the paper materials lying on the table at home for me to copy for the kids classes before first day back which would have been the Tuesday after New Year’s day. We were not thinking about her ending this life just ten days after the start of Christmas break.

The fall of 2019 preschool class was the start of year thirty six of her teaching preschool. It was two days a week, 6.5 hours each day. She got there around 7:30 each of those days to do class things. Some parents needed to find someone to watch their preschool student between when they left for work and closer to 9 which was the start time. When she learned about that the offer was made for the people who were all going to work early and needed to do something with their child before school started to bring them to school with Cindy and they played or worked on some things until everyone was there and ready to go. There was no extra charge for that.

The school taught many things. After about three years she had things figured out for curriculum, knew the sources we wanted, and how to handle the classes. These were 3 and 4 year olds. After about two months of each new school year the kids knew and were secure in how things worked. Parents were always amazed at how they acted. Not far into the year they started being amazed at the kinds of things they were learning. The academic end of it was on the alphabet, phonics, reading, numbers, counting, memory work, a little music tossed in, and Bible stories. There was a Bible verse for each letter of the alphabet which they learned. The two year students knew all of them by memory before the end of second year. There was play time, milk and snacks, lunch, nap time, rewards for doing a good job with behavior, etc. and demerits for not doing such a good job. They had to fix their messes and learn to operate together.

I cannot tell you what all of the kids who are now on their own, having been in classes that are 14 or more years ago, are doing. But I do know there are students who are in all the following: ministers in churches, health professional, law enforcement officer, lawyer, business people, people working a great many different kinds of jobs, mom’s and dad’s raising their kids, etc. We are glad for the success they are finding.

There was the day when Cindy was contacted by the first former student who wanted to sign up their first child to be in preschool with her. That happened several times. We do not know exact numbers but over those 36 years over three hundred 3 and 4 year olds attended Faith Promise Preschool with our one and only teacher, Miss Cindy. Twelve was the maximum we would take and that was the number in a great many of those years. We began to routinely have total lists numbering 20-35. The first twelve to sign up got in. Everyone else was waiting to see if any of the twelve moved, etc. and a spot opened up. This was word of mouth as people told friends with babies they should sign up early. And some put newborn babies on the list so as to be sure they were in the first twelve. We did not see a decline until the state of Iowa introduced free preschool in public schools.

I will do another part relating to what she did in church related activities. But this will give you a good idea of what was involved in the preschool end of her life. So, she did end up spending lots of time teaching kids, just going about it in a different way than she was thinking about in high school.   Randol Goodrich