North Cascade Church Catches Spark of Service

September 01, 2008 | Cindy Hartley

The spark of service caught on for a women's Bible study group during a North Cascade Church retreat two years ago. A Skagit Community Action Agency representative was at the retreat and presented a list of service opportunities.

Shortly after, with the agency's wish list in hand, the Bible study group began collecting food items and treat bags for adults and children.

Their excitement spilled over to students at Skagit Adventist School and children's Bible study church groups. They joined the service projects, with some classrooms adopting homeless families for Christmas in place of a classroom gift exchange.

More opportunities opened up as a local shelter remodeled and expanded their space. The Adventist volunteers went into action, painting, furnishing, decorating, and feeding Home Depot volunteers.

Even more Bible study groups began to join in and help. One adult class adopted an apartment and common area in the shelter, and a children's class decided to decorate a child's bedroom.

Because of the North Cascade Church's involvement, Cindy Hartley, the group coordinator, was selected as Volunteer of the Year for the Washington State Coalition for the Homeless. The Community Action Agency also intends to honor North Cascade Church during the dedication for the new family shelter and will have one of the pastors lead out in prayer.

It only takes a spark to get a fire going and the congregation at North Cascade is actively fanning the flames of community service.