Tell about a time you felt encouraged by the sense of community at Calvary
by Bob and Diane Enger
November 2018, our daughter and family had a house fire. Their home was a total loss. They came to live at our home while they made decisions how to proceed with starting over.
As soon as family and friends found out about this tragic event, including our Calvary church family, we received phone calls and messages to find out what we needed. The Calvary family reached out to us and helped with meals, clothing, toys, financial gifts, etc. while we were all in shock and trying to figure out what to do next.
What impressed us most was the fact that Calvary people kept asking how we were doing and exhibiting genuine care and concern. Every time we were at a rehearsal for worship chorale, worship team, usher team, or on any Sunday at least one person asked how we were doing for at least a year after the fire. Sometimes we were even asked if we needed anything else.
We don’t recall ever being part of a group where people showed this continued type of care on an ongoing basis when most people would forget about an event that didn’t impact their own families or friends. This demonstrated to us that Calvary worshippers truly know how to be the hands and feet of Christ!
Thank you Calvary!
Prayer & Care Group Togetherness
by Pat Hallstrom
Our Prayer and Care Group that reaches out to shut-ins gathers every Thursday to pray and then visit members of our church at nursing homes or assisted living places or in their homes. We gave a birthday party for Ruth Weincoff in 2018 and 2019 and sang hymns accompanied by Dorothy on her accordion. Ruth had moved here recently and needed some help feeling a part of Calvary. I think our visits worked! This past Christmas we went caroling to almost every one of our dear shut-ins and brought them cookies and a gift. We all managed to fit in Ann Knodel’s van as we traveled from place to place. Over the years I have grown very close to these women who love to serve in this way. We love reaching out to these older members of our church and have a great time being together.
Encouraged and Lifted
by Lores and Jeff Vlaminck
Daughter of Cliff and Mary Gingerich
I/We have never felt more encouraged and lifted up by the pastors of this church as when both of my parents died within 11 weeks of each other… the flowers, financial donation, attendance at my Mom and Dad’s funeral, production of the service bulletins (Pastor Tim), the emails of care and love and the ongoing sincere “how are you doing?” by each pastor. I am grateful beyond measure! While my parents are in a wonderful heaven without Covid- 19, I/we miss them daily. The additional words of are and comfort will last as lifelong memory. Thank you!
by Tim & Barb Ruopsa
July 5, 1979 we lost our daughter Amy Marie Ruopsa, full term, while Barb was a patient in Labor/Delivery at Methodist Hospital. An uneventful period of time and joy changed dramatically as the fetal monitor Indicated a problem as the heartbeat had stopped. Barb was taken into delivery a short while later and Amy was born.
While in delivery I called the Church and a couple of gentleman Steve Washechek and Ken Levos arrived and offered prayer and support that was so desperately needed. A little while later we held our precious Amy and the Dr had Barb admitted for one night.
We had experienced many words of encouragement and prayer. We arrived home to expressions of sympathy and many floral arrangements cards which it made the death seem even more real. We held onto promises and hope that God wanted her and there was a plan.
Pastor Walter Eriksen conducted the graveside service attended by many families from Calvary and friends. Though our grief and emptiness was very hard to bear, we felt the love and support of Jesus through our Calvary Family.
One year later on July 1, 1980, we greeted twin daughters Michele & Angela realizing then that God did have a master plan and life and circumstances were under His control. That included the added joy of two gifts of life.
As a result we have been able to share our understanding and sympathy with other grieving families. Calvary was able to make that particular journey more bearable and Calvary has continued to support us in love, words and prayer in journeys since.
by Char Derksen
Allen and I have been encouraged by church community many times. We so appreciated the deep prayer support for our youngest son and us when he walked through the death of his first marriage. We have been encouraged at the love and care experienced in our mini congregation [R.O.C.K].
We are Calvary Stories are a way to build a sense of community through story, we’d like to gather submissions from YOU the church body, telling the tales of great times of community and connection through the years and with our church-family. Every two weeks or so, we will be sharing a prompt. If you have a story to answer it, we’d love to hear it! It could be just a few words or a few paragraphs, but we’d love to hear it. (It can be something recent, of course, but it can be from any time during your involvement at Calvary – and it doesn’t have to only be COVID-related stories!) Responses will be gathered and published on the website in the near future. To submit a story, please email: [email protected].