Saturday, October 15, 2011

Duly Nudged

During long-time member Doug Kemp's funeral service in September I drew the large congregation's attention to the food box at the front of the sanctuary. I put it there and two well-meaning ushers started to remove it before the service began, thinking it was out of place. I told everyone that Doug regularly gave me what I will kindly call a pep talk, convinced that it should always be full as our St. Paul's support for the Salvation Army Food Bank. I challenged folk at the service and during worship to fill the two boxes we have in the church in memory of Doug. I commented that if we didn't, I might be hearing his voice in the night.
Another St. Paul's Doug, Hately, faithfully picks up our food contributions and transports them over to the Army distribution centre. He tells us that contributions have spiked through the past few weeks and this week he had to make two trips. In addition, a number of people made cash donations for the food bank.
It warms my heart that people have responded in this way. Doug's widow, Billie, has lost most of her sight due to macular degeneration so even though she still attends church regularly she can't see the full boxes. But I can tell her about the generosity of our members and others. I joke that Doug nagged me, but I'm glad he did. Sometimes we need to be nudged out of our complacency and busyness. Doug was a generous Christian in life and its good to know that he is having this impact in death.


Nancy said...

I know of someone who was at the funeral and doesn't have any church affiliation that I am aware of, delivered a large bag of groceries to my mother-in-law, asking her to put the items in the food box at St. Paul's. (In her wit,my mother-in-law thought maybe food was being delivered to her:)) The message was received by more than just the St. Paul's community.

Laura said...

I watched with interest prior to Doug's funeral as I noticed the food bank box, thought it might have been an oversight, than rationalized that given the attention to the chancel otherwise, it was meant to be there.And having been priviledged to know of some of Doug and Billie's life story, I knew this was the message we were supposed to get. Even in their grief, they were generous and that made me remember that there is more I can do.Yes, I continually need those nudges. Thanks, Doug and Billie.