A Tradition and An Update

The Veronicas/Simons are a LARGE and compassionate group of people who provide post-funeral brunches and lunches to bereaved families at St. Anastasia. This ministry is one of St. Anastasia’s original Christian Services, and St. Anastasia is almost unique in offering this empathetic ministry to its members. That alone makes it special. But there’s more. It’s special because it fulfills our call to be hospitable (cf. Romans 12:13); it helps us to comfort those who mourn (cf. Matthew 5:4) and – as a busy person, I love this part – it is such a great way for people of differing abilities and constraints to use what time and talent they DO have to serve the body of Christ (cf. Romans 12:4-5).

There are Veronicas/Simons who buy something (like a bag of frozen corn) and deliver it to the church. And there are folks who make yummy potatoes at home and drop them off, still hot, right on time. Meanwhile, some of the workers set the tables; during the day, some pour juice; later, some clean up.  Before any of this can happen, a group of good stewards makes all the important phone calls to ask the volunteers for specific donations.

And one small set of dedicated women currently act as the chairpeople for this ministry. The chairpeople take turns being “on call” for a month. When the need arises, the on-call chairperson alerts her team members to the duty. Utilizing a long-established procedure, she makes a menu and a timing plan, she makes a few phone calls, and she attends the event to graciously coordinate incoming donations and their presentation.

Here’s what we all need to know, though: Not a single one of our chairpeople is getting any younger. Many of them have been doing this since their (now married) pre-schoolers were toddling around the Davidson Center behind them. They have not quit because they are so zealous for the ministry and need others to step up before they can step down. They deserve to be able to retire… and to be able to spend their winters somewhere less frigid. So…

Please, consider joining this ministry now – in any way you can, but especially if you’re feeling that you could be a chairperson, please let me know before it disintegrates – and while the current chairpeople are still in Michigan to train you.

And! In hopes of meeting the needs of those of you who would like to help but need to work from home, we are offering the idea of beginning a new position within the group: a coordinator who would take over a portion of the chairperson job by making the phone calls necessary to “get the ball rolling.” This would include calling the table setters, cleaners, and servers. It would also mean contacting the callers who request the food, and calling the funeral home to request the flowers. Please let me know if you are willing. I can’t wait to hear from you.