Every year in December, Star Gospel Mission, one of St. Philip’s Home Mission partners, distributes gift cards for groceries to hundreds of people in need here in the Lowcountry.
In the past, long lines of people circled around the building to wait and receive a gift card. Last year, it was pouring down rain and cold! Dr. Marion Platt, Star Gospel’s new executive director, decided to change the process.
This year, distribution spanned five days instead of one, so that each person who qualified for assistance was able to have an appointment to speak to a case worker, who took down important information such as personal and family needs, as well as prayer requests.
My husband and I decided to volunteer together as we had both met Dr. Platt and were impressed with his leadership and enthusiasm. We wanted to learn more about what he was doing at Star Gospel, so we decided to go see for ourselves!
We were both trained in the morning as caseworkers, which simply meant we would meet with a person, enter information into a computer, and most importantly, ask for prayer requests! Our day flew by, and before we knew it, the last person had come through Star Gospel’s doors! After five days of one-on-one appointments with caseworkers, 580 people had received gift cards, prayer, dignity, and love from Star Gospel.
Going to Star Gospel to volunteer was by far the highlight of our Christmas. It was difficult to see people going through such tough, heartbreaking times, but it was an honor and privilege to be able to pray with them and offer support. And sharing this experience with my husband made it extra special. I hope you will consider going to visit Star Gospel Mission, and maybe you too will decide to volunteer!
By Swain Marion, Home Missions Co-chair, St. Philip’s Church, Charleston