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New leader at Cathedral of the Pines

RINDGE — After 17 years as an administrator at two of Franklin Pierce University’s graduate campuses in Keene and Goodyear, Ariz.,, Andrea Brode of Walpole began a new professional venture this March, accepting a job as Cathedral of the Pine’s executive director.

Brode, whose background is in academic administration, said Thursday she’s excited about future opportunities to work with the general public, build partnerships with area schools and businesses, as well as learn about the history of the Monadnock region.

“So many people have deep and abiding ties to this place,” Brode said of the Cathedral of the Pines. “It’s a beautiful location, and its mission is an important one.”

Cathedral of the Pines, a nonprofit organization, sponsors educational programs and public events to honor those who have served the nation. Employees and volunteers of the cathedral have a strong respect for the natural environment and people of all religious denominations, Brode said.

As the cathedral’s executive director, Brode said she’s excited to work with the community to enhance the cathedral and introduce new events.

“I want to concentrate on upgrading our museum so that it really appeals to a broad and diverse audience,” Brode said, adding that she wants more young people to get involved. “Our exhibits today focus heavily on WWII and there have certainly been conflicts since then. We need to recognize those people for their service.”

To begin that work, Brode said there is a committee cataloging and organizing the museum’s memorabilia.

Brode said she is currently in talks with Monadnock Music of Peterborough and Atlas PyroVision Productions of Jaffrey about a new event planned for this August, which the partners hope will be so successful it will become an annual event.

“There will be a concert and fireworks display,” Brode said, adding that further details are still being worked out.

In the more immediate future, Brode said she’s focused on the Cathedral of the Pine’s annual Memorial Day celebration, which is scheduled for Thursday at 2 p.m.

“We’ve always had our celebration on the traditional Memorial Day, rather than on the national-recognized holiday,” she said referring to the decision to host a ceremony Thursday rather than Monday.

The ceremony will include an invocation by The Rev. David Jadlocki of Rindge’s First Congregational Church, and a presentation of colors and firing salute by the Rindge Veterans Association.

“We also have a women’s army core of veterans who will present a newly installed stained-glass window in our hilltop house, the original building of the cathedral,” Brode said,

The stained-glass window design, she said, will be a surprise.

Also new to the cathedral this spring, is a flagpole that was just erected. The site surrounding the flagpole is simple today, but Brode said she has an idea for how to bring it to life.

“I would like to institute a memorial engraver project,” she said.

Brode said community members would engrave stones with the names of servicemen and women and lay them around the base of the pole in their honor.

Alyssa Dandrea can be reached at 924-7172 ext. 228 or She’s on Twitter at @alyssadandrea.

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