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Why I volunteer with reVision

Posted by: Lewis Gannon on 5/22/2012 11:26 AM

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I will be 90 years old in August. My wife Sara and I have been married for 70 years. We have been blessed many times during our journey. The church community has been our guidepost along the way.

I have served as a lay person on every committee, commission and board the United Methodist Church has to offer. The best lesson I learned in dealing with youngsters occurred while I was Chairman of the Board of Trustees. The Superintendent of Sunday School requested advice and assistance in handling a discipline problem with four boys who were disrupting the Sunday School Program. She informed us that the boys would hang their legs out of second floor windows, throw water balloons onto children below, set fire to the choir robe closet, and steal money from the collection plate. I suggested that we should not allow the boys on church property. But thankfully two high school teachers, both PhDs, suggested a more appropriate action, to which we all agreed. The rest of the story is that one boy grew up to become Assistant District Attorney, one became a Juvenile Probation Officer, one became a Professor, and one became a Business Manager. The lesson I learned? Be careful when judging youngsters.

When I expressed interest in volunteering with reVision, Pastor Justin Coleman told me the job description was to meet clients at the door, invite them in, and be a good host. I thought I could meet those requirements.

On my first night I met a youngster at the door. He seemed a little apprehensive and was reluctant to converse with me. I helped him find his Probation Officer which made him very happy. Since then this youngster has been very friendly with me. I have even met his grandmother. Being in the trenches with these youngsters, who may have made some bad choices in the past but are now changing their lifestyles and behavior, is indeed very rewarding. They now see me as a friend and show me signs of appreciation.

As a member of the Board of Stewards of St. Luke’s, it is my opinion that our partnership with Harris County Juvenile Probation is good stewardship of our facilities and resources. If we do not help these youngsters now, who will? This church is a community and can serve as a guidepost to help these youngsters along their life journey.

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