Humans were created in part for community. Whether the locality be city, suburbs, or country is immaterial. Our neighbors may be close or a country-mile away. We are neighbors and part of a larger community.
Our church takes this truth seriously. We have Community Groups within the church body to connect folks within smaller communities. We have Prayer Walks around our community. We simply walk and pray for folks around a neighborhood. We collect food for weeks for food drives to be delivered to those in need in the community. A spectacular outdoor Christmas program is put on by us every year. It brings many folks from surrounding communities to witness the Real meaning of Christmas. This production requires a huge community of volunteers.
Though I do not help in all these activities, I do in several. The most recent of which is the mentorship program. This is my first year in this popular program between our schools and church. Known as the National Church Adopt-a-School initiative started over thirty years ago by Dr. Tony Evan’s. A highly successful program formed between local churches and the public school community. Our church has been a part of this program for a couple years or more.
On-line and in home training are required, along with background checks on potential mentors. Questionnaire forms for mentors were filled out as well. With the consent of the parent(s), and help from the school counselor, students are given a mentor. I was given a 1st grade boy.
Last Spring, 2022, our community pastor invited more congregants to participate in this program. The previous year gleaned such positive results, the local school system asked it to be opened to all area churches, for all the city schools. I accepted the invitation.
It was pretty awkward on the first few meetings. New friendships always are. But now, he smiles big when he sees me, and visa versa. I have high hopes for this sweet mentee and me.