On Sunday, January 16th, FELC hosted a luncheon for the Millikin Swim Team. Many students stay on campus during the winter break and no campus food service is available. Other churches and organizations also provided meals and this day was actually the last day. The coach commented that this was the best meal they had the entire time. The students appreciated the homemade soups, the different sandwiches, and the unexpected hospitality of also providing gluten-free, vegetarian and vegan meals.
We began PRAYING with and for the team/students and for those who prepared the meal (on the day of the lesson about the miracle at the wedding banquet at Cana). Jane Cade, Denise Troester, Mary Jo Rowley and Rick Strine SERVED JOYFULLY by preparing and serving a meal. The team took home containers with extra soup and some treat bags with fresh fruit, juice boxes and various wrapped snacks provided by Molly Berry and Mary Jo Rowley.
While we were gathering before the meal, one of the visitors was talking with Pastor Rita and he asked what we believe as Lutherans. Our willingness to host the team became an opportunity to witness and TELL THE STORY to the campus community and share that we believe that we are saved by grace through faith.
Later that day the coach texted "All I can say is thank you. Your church was amazing. The food and the hospitality! I was overwhelmed and am very thankful. We even packed lunches and snacks for the swimmers in isolation and got them delivered." The reply to the coach said "I'm thrilled! I'm telling you, it's the greatest place. If you are ever looking for a place to worship we would love to have you."
Great things happen when we pray constantly, serve joyfully and tell the story. May 2022 be a year where we all invite others to come and experience the love and joy we share as a church family.