Celebrating volunteers comes pretty easy for me. It’s a shame I don’t take the time to write of them more often. They simply make our weekends work, and this weekend was no exception. As a matter of fact, this weekend was exceptional.
What made this weekend stand out was how our teams performed when most every normal weekend function they engage in changed.
In short, we cancelled a service and ran the ND football game on the big screens in its place. You can challenge the reasoning behind this series–I’m not going down that path–but I will point you here for a better understanding.
This post is to celebrate scores of volunteers who were willing to embrace change in order to bring a positive experience to a guest who’s not sure they matter to anyone, let alone, the creator of the universe.
Because the game started at 3 PM, opening the doors to the public a full two hours before the cancelled 5 PM service required adjustments for nearly every volunteer team to navigate.
It required our performing and technical arts volunteers to arrive for rehearsals before 1:00. For most of those team members, that equates to almost 20 hours of ministry over the week in the building alone. We transformed the auditorium by adding tables and games. We contracted a food vendor, gave away gifts and added our own halftime entertainment.
For almost seven hours on Saturday, our Usher/Greeter teams welcomed guests, ran food, monitored video games and corn hole. Traffic volunteers showed up early to prevent potential chaos while Campus Guides were in place early to assist visitors. Our Kids’ ministry volunteers adjusted to the game plan, Scores of volunteers served behind the scenes prior to the event. Popcorn was popping and soft drinks distributed-not because of our great staff, but all because of our amazing volunteers.
No one complained when further adjustments had to be made to accommodate the game running into the “normally scheduled” 7 PM service. They simply adjusted their ministries on the fly.
Before the end of a very long day, the auditorium needed to be transformed for Sunday. Over a dozen volunteers hung around till well after 10 PM to make that happen. Well done, TEAM!
Within all of this, I need to spotlight one particular volunteer. Let’s call him Bill (because that’s his real name). Bill O’Hara is battling another round of cancer. I’m talking Stage 4 cancer. Throughout the last several months of treatment, Bill has continued to prioritize the two ministries he serves.
He’s got some decent days and then the days that you would expect him to have. I watched him this weekend as he welcomed guests and their children, knowing all along there was no place he would rather be. His commitment to volunteering puts every excuse I’ve had the responsibility to listen to, to shame. I’m honored to serve with such great teams of volunteers.