Church Secretary and Auxiliary Committee Luncheon

           Last month, invitations to honor area church secretaries spread across the Roanoke Valley to the churches.  The church secretaries sorted that day’s mail batch into the pastor’s pile, youth minister’s pile, children’s pastor…secretary’s pile—a card from the Rescue Mission.  The cover of the invitation spelled, “Passion” in purple rays, and the inside read, “We Know you are a Passionate Church Secretary…Passionate about the people, passionate about the work, Passionate about doing God’s will.”  And all the secretaries sighed, ‘oh yes.’ They RSVPed and showed up at the Rescue Mission on May 21,2008.

                Purple balloons floated above twenty two tables.  The Mission served our guests with chicken salad, melon fruit, and poppy-seed cake, adorned with a strawberry.  Karen McNew, a local news anchor, gave her testimony as to how she came to know the Lord.  Every woman in the room admired her poise and sweet presence.  The Simplicity Singers carried a tune as well as the ladies’ hearts.  The music was lovely.  For our mission moment, Mary Ellen, a girl in the recovery program, told her story.  She told the ladies about her addictive behavior as a cutter, alcoholic, and bulimic.  One night she was on a binge drink and she ended the night at the hospital with a deep and intentional cut in her thigh.  She tried remedial programs, but nothing stuck.  She said, “I wasn’t doing it for myself, I was doing it for my parents.” One night, she hit a turning point.  After twenty or so beers, after verbally and physically assaulting the police, and after a night in jail, Mary Ellen’s parents gave her two options: go to the Rescue Mission or get out of our house.  Now, at the mission, Mary Ellen has been sober for a year.  Her parents come to every occasion and encourage their bright eyed daughter to complete recovery.  Backed by their support, she says, “Now, I’m doing it for myself.”  Mary Ellen stood in front of the luncheon and proudly told her story.  The roomed stopped moving, stirring, twitching.  Instead, she moved everyone’s heart with inspiration and love.  Stories like Mary Ellen’s are the heart of the Rescue Mission.  It’s what we are passionate about.

         Church secretaries are passionate about the church. Everyone has a different passion.  The Rescue Mission announced the church secretaries by name and honored them with perfume and thanked them for being passionate about the body of Christ.


            At lunch, Hollins Road Church of the Brethren presented this quilt to Art on a Mission to be auctioned at silent auction for the month of June.  Like the mission, the quilt is a pallet of donation, service, community, and talent.  And like the mission, this quilt has a story of how it came to be.  One day, a community member donated hand-stitched-Sun-Bonnet-Sue-appliquéd squares to the thrift store. Auxiliary member, Virginia Boyer found the squares and gave them to auxiliary member Sylvia Lemon.  Sylvia knew exactly what to do with them.  She brought the ‘Sunbonnet Sues’ to Hollins Road Church of the Brethren.  A male church member assembled the squares and did the lattice work.  Another member drew the quilting pattern. Then the quilt was ready for Sylvia’s quilting circle to hand-quilt the fabrics together.  But, it was not finished yet.  For completion, another church member hemmed the quilt.  Finally, the piece is done and ready to present back to the mission.   Just like the mission, this quilt shows a mosaic of God’s blessings—time, service, and treasure. Sylvia said, “We take what we have and try to make something out of it.” The money from quilt will go towards purchasing twelve pac-n-plays for The Women and Children’s Shelter.



Finally, the ladies met Crash, Lee ‘Crash’ Clark.  Dash could not come….but Crash could! Crash, Dash’s cousin, gobbled on about the Dumbstick Dash on Thanksgiving Day. “TRANSLATION OF THE TURKEY HAND SIGNAL…..It’s not too late for you to be getting groups in your home churches to support DRUMSTICK DASH this Thanksgiving!”



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