Wednesday, 30 September 2009

Official Move-In Day

After chapel at Cornerstone this morning, I spent a while helping our friends from the shelter move into the new building! It was such an exciting time for them and they are thrilled about their first day in such a nice facility! Here are some pictures of the move-in and the new building:

Lonnie, proudly in her new room

Wednesday, 23 September 2009

Change is in the air!

Yesterday afternoon, Joel and I had the privilege of attending the official ribbon-cutting ceremony of the brand new family homeless shelter building! Though they only moved about a block away from their old (and I mean old) building of the last 20 years, they may as well be in an entirely new location, for no expense was spared in this $9 million project. The shelter is run by the YWCA and after multiple generous contributions, a full-on fundraiser, and government funding, everyone involved in this process was finally able to see all that they have been working towards!

As I stood among a hundred influential people who had worked so hard and invested so much to make this dream a reality, I wondered about the significance of my role, of our church's role. I wondered if what we were doing really mattered or made any difference. I wondered if there was any clear fruit that we could point to and see how the Lord was using us. Right then, I heard someone yell my name and turned around to see Felicia, one of the residents at the shelter, coming my way. With a big smile on her face, she exclaimed how glad she was to see someone she knew, and then proceeded to simply stand with me, off to the side. Over the next few minutes, several other residents, house managers, and even a former resident from many months ago sought us out and seemed to take comfort in our presence and simple conversation. I realized in that moment that I had all of the evidence I needed of how the Lord has been using Redeemer in the community. While there are certainly many vital roles in caring for our neighbors, the Lord seemed to reiterate and encourage the role that he has currently given us, and how he alone deserves glory for it!

Last night, several RCC folks shared the last Tuesday night meal ever to be had in the old shelter building, and the feeling of excitement for what's to come is undeniable. In fact, next Tuesday is the actual move-in day for the residents, and we have the distinct privilege of sharing their first meal with them in their new home! I am so excited to see how the Lord is going to deepen and expand our involvement and relationships through this new facility.

If you have any extra time on your hands Saturday morning (9-11) or especially Sunday afternoon (1pm- until) and would like to help move stuff to the new shelter, email Dwight (

Friday, 18 September 2009


This past week was our quarterly missions team meeting. We had special guests, via the internet. Harold Andrews and his family shared with us about their time on the mission field here in the U.S. The amazing part is that they reach muslims throughout the middle east through a simple radio program. I was encouraged to focus my heart on missions here at home, with less dependance on those overseas, counting myself worthy to share the gospel. Every opportunity throughout the day to share the gospel is often dismissed because I loose sight of "missions", the Great Commission.."go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to all creation." {Mark 16:15} Be encouraged as I was, hearing the testimony and continued good work for the kingdom by our missionaries. Pray for them and lets help one another turn our hearts to Christ and His mission field in our lives. (you can find a complete list of our missionaries here.) Amanda Blake

Friday, 4 September 2009

Saturday morning bball/football

Every Saturday morning in Fairfield, a couple of Restoration Academy guys on faculty organize some pick-up basketball (in the spring/summer) or flag football (fall/winter) for youth from the area. We have been playing basketball at Restoration Academy's gym for the last several months and consistently have anywhere from 12-30 guys from the neighborhood and school make an appearance to showcase their talents and to get in some good games.

This Saturday, we are beginning the initial switch over to flag football, which will be played in the park in the center of Fairfield, right next to the school. We start around 9am and it last for around 2 hours, but you are free to come and go whenever your schedule requires, so if you enjoy playing and hanging out with some kids in need of good role models, then please show up! You don't have to be great at the sport, just willing to get schooled. If you want more info or are interested in coming, call Ben Sciacca (the principal who heads it up)-205-215-5212 or me (336-831-4489). Spread the word to anyone who may be interested and hope you take up the challenge to invest in these kids' lives (and to avoid getting taken to the house)!

Wednesday, 2 September 2009

Very belated Woodlawn Summer Festival Pics

I know you all have been waiting anxiously on the edge of your seats for this very moment, so wait no longer-it is here! Although the Woodlawn Summer Festival took place over a month ago, I have just gotten my hands on some of the pictures. The morning started with a workday at Cornerstone Christian School, which consisted primarily of painting two bathrooms and a hall, building a dividing wall between two classrooms, and preparing Elaine Davis's classroom.

Then, we moved out to the front of Woodlawn High School, where non-stop balloon animals and face-painting ensued. There were all kinds of games, activities, and food for the opening of the Dream Center across the street.

All in all it was a great day, so thank you so much to all who were able to come help! If you want to see more pictures from this day, click here.