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What I’ve Noticed...

Brookdale is a vibrant faith community of faith. Many of our ministries are visible and attention-getting—like Tuesday Tutoring or Wednesday Bridge Builders. Other ministries go unnoticed, but they are no less important. Such is the case with two of the Women’s circles. Peace circle, led by Betty Olson, and Joy Circle, now led by Fran Gunberg each meet one morning a month with the very specific purpose of rolling bandages to send to the Congo.  I know that sounds like an archaic practice, but the truth is this is still a vital need for the Congo Medical Ministries.

 

The Covenant has had The Rip ‘N Roll program for over 65 years. (You can read more about the program on the Covenant website.) Brookdale has been joining in this effort for years. By collecting sheets, ripping them in strips and sewing and rolling them to fit prescribed measurements, Brookdale women have been able to assist the wider Covenant cause, sending over 100 bandage rolls (close to 90 lbs) each of the last several years. Once these combined shipments reach the Congo, these supplies range from $120,000 to $192,000 in value, money’s that can now be spent on more necessary medical supplies. The bandages are used for outer coverings over sterile bandages, and sometimes for slings. Because they can be washed, they can be reused. Sounds like reuse and recycle. Not so archaic after all. Our women are making medical services possible for hospitals and clinics: a quiet ministry with a powerful impact.

What really impresses me though, beyond the impact of this service is the group of women who participate month after month. Betty’s circle has about 14 members, five of whom are over the age of 90. Fran’s group is smaller, but no less dedicated. Both groups sew all morning, with a short coffee break, and end with devotions. In between they do the quiet work of community: caring for each other as friends who have known each other for years, and caring for the needs of others they are not ever likely to meet.

Betty’s group meets the second Monday of each month at 9:30. Fran would love to bolster her group with some new members. Her group meets the third Tuesday of each month starting at 10 am. And just to prove this is not a humorless group she reminded me of the wisdom Ecclesiastes 3:7. “There is a time to tear, and there is a time to sew. Seems that it’s still time to rip and roll.

 Women’s Ministry at Brookdale may have changed over the years. It will probably ebb in one form only to resurface in another. But skilled hands and devoted hearts remain.

 

Rip 'N Roll

The Covenant has had The Rip ‘N Roll program for over 65 years. (You can read more about the program on the Covenant website.) Brookdale has been joining in this effort for years. By collecting sheets, ripping them in strips and sewing and rolling them to fit prescribed measurements, Brookdale women have been able to assist the wider Covenant cause, sending over 100 bandage rolls (close to 90 lbs) each of the last several years. Once these combined shipments reach the Congo, these supplies range from $120,000 to $192,000 in value, money’s that can now be spent on more necessary medical supplies. The bandages are used for outer coverings over sterile bandages, and sometimes for slings. Because they can be washed, they can be reused. Sounds like reuse and recycle. Not so archaic after all. Our women are making medical services possible for hospitals and clinics: a quiet ministry with a powerful impact.

Rip-N-Roll info

 

Covenant Kids Congo

The the situation in Congo is both dire and hopeful. As the Covenant church we sense this inescapable call: to stand with our Congolese friends to turn around the most over-looked province in the neediest country of the world. Joining together with World Vision in Equateur, this unprecedented partnership will provide a “journey to transformation,” in addition to the spiritual work carried out through the congregations of the CEUM. This proven community development model for sustainable long-term solutions is built on World Vision’s 60 years of experience building a better world for children.

http://www.covchurch.org/covenantkidscongo/