All is well at ‘Mercy Hospital’ of Whitewater Crossing!
We witnessed an amazing response to our recent ‘Respite Nite’ for special needs children and their parents. Read some excerpts below from two emails I received. They will touch your heart and remind you afresh about what a true Love Revolution is all about!
From Terri McManus:
My husband Mike was a buddy last night to a wonderful little boy. I chose to be part of the activities at the Welcome Center. Because I was not attached to one child, I was free to roam around to every activity area doing various tasks. What I saw throughout the evening is beyond words. The love that was showered upon these wonderful special needs children and their siblings was simply amazing. The smiles on their faces and that of their buddies were beautiful. I saw one woman in particular from our church numerous times last night with her special needs little boy. The love and enthusiasm she showered on him touched my heart beyond words…I was truly blessed to witness God’s love on these children through our church volunteers. The smiles on the parents’ faces when they came to pick up their children was amazing. They were so happy after having a few hours to themselves. I would like to encourage everyone to come on board for the next Respite night in November and mark their calendars now for an amazing WOW God experience.
From Michele Haas who helped lead this effort:
I have heard you say many times that there is nothing like the church when it is working right. I agree with that & I have witnessed that many times. But Friday nite’s respite was up close & personal for me. I truly witnessed the church working right!! If I had any doubt that this was not the time for respite at WCCC, it is gone!
What a blessing it was for me to work with all of these wonderful volunteers who so willingly gave up their Friday nite to create this love revolution!! Everyone worked together as a team. What a love revolution we accomplished!!
Each volunteer was assigned a role. As the nite began, everyone started in their assigned roles. But once the activities started, the roles blurred! I saw security helping take kids to the bathroom & changing diapers; welcome team & servers became security; servers & concierge stayed to help open the 3rd (& the 4th!) quiet room; medical personnel helped buddies feel more comfortable with their medically complex kids.
Flexibility & eagerness to serve and love was evident in all of the volunteers. And after the nite was over, many wanted to know when the next event was & several of the buddies requested to have the same child!!
Parents were spotted holding hands and smiling as they left for their date! I loved watching the buddies interact with their kids!! Everyone was smiling and having a good time. Piggy-back rides and hugs were in abundance! What a blessing they were for these kids & their parents!
When it was pick-up time, everyone pitched in and escorted the smiling and ‘Refreshed’ parents to the room where their child was engaged in activities. Many parents did not want us to get their children right away – they wanted to observe their kids with special needs simply being – being accepted, loved on, encouraged, laughing, playing. Some of the kids did not want to leave, and many were asking when we were going to do this again.
I have tried and tried to figure out a way to capture what Respite Nite was like. There are no words that I can use to express how awesome the nite was!! This was so much bigger and better than I ever imagined! When we add all of the kids from childcare with the kids with special needs & their siblings, we had 50 kids. And 100 volunteers! This ministry is more than awesome – it’s God-awesome!! I can’t wait for the next Respite!!
Aren’t you excited to be a part of a church where Love and God rules!
We have another opportunity to be the church to those who are hungry this coming weekend. We are asking EVERYONE at Whitewater who attends worship this weekend to bring some canned goods with you so that our Food Panty shelved can be stocked. We are simply out of food, but people are in need. We are touching dozens of families during these tough economic times – please bring your food with you and drop off at the front door when you arrive.
Real Matthew 25 activity continues, too, this coming Friday and Saturday (May 21/22) with our first ever “Clothing Drive.” We really need volunteers of compassion to come this Friday at 9:00am to help sort all the clothes that have been donated. We will also need volunteers to help with the actual ‘Give Away Day’ on Saturday, May 22, from 8:00am – 2:00pm here on our campus. We need help staging the rooms, manning the tables, and hosting our guests. If you can volunteer, please email/call the office today to let us know! The hospital here at Whitewater needs your help!
P.S. There is a Ladies’ Bus Day Trip Fundraiser being sponsored by the Women’s Steering committee to benefit the WCCC Food Pantry on Tuesday, June 15, from 8:30am to 5:00pm. (“Gardens of Southeastern Ohio”). Tickets may be purchased May 22/23 at the Welcome Center for $50. They will tour McMurrays Host & Daylily Garden, Springbrook Meadows Lavender Farm (where lunch will be served), and Hickory Bend Water Garden. Only 56 tickets are available!