Since joining St. Luke’s in the mid eighties, the blessings I have received at St. Luke’s have been boundless – from being a part of a loving and supportive Sunday School class – the Randy Smith Bible Study group – to meeting the love of my life – Jack Blanton, Sr. –  in that class, and marrying him in the St. Luke’s Chapel.  Jack’s parents had been among the original members who founded the church, and Jack had hitchhiked home from University of Texas to be among those first 200+ members who joined on the first official Sunday, November 11, 1945, at Lamar High School where the church first met.

Our church was a major part of Jack’s life and continues to be a major part of mine. We had seen our church grow over many years and both of us understood the importance of volunteers to make our church run smoothly.  He had followed in his father’s footsteps and had been involved in its leadership over a long period of time, and I had served in various capacities, including one of my favorite volunteer positions as a Christian Friend, welcoming new members to our church. We also understood the importance of sharing our financial resources to ensure that all the things we treasure about St. Luke’s – the programs and outreach that set us apart – could continue. 

Becoming a member of a church group – a Sunday school class or small group – has been a major blessing for me and for so many others.  Every week not only do we study the bible and try and understand its meaning for our lives, but we are lovingly supported by our fellow members, who have become treasured friends, in times of joy, stress, health issues and the loss of loved ones.  They were there for me as I went through the terrible loss of my dear husband, Jack, three years ago.   And the church was there for me through grief support sessions.   I was so lucky to have them all to lean on and I wish that kind of love and support for every member of our church.  My blessings have indeed been boundless.

As I look at the burgeoning campus with all the new buildings going up, and know all the wonderful youth programs, bible studies, family gatherings, support groups, music programs, great sermons and “comfort and joy” that will take place here, I am reminded how visionary and generous our founding members like Jack’s parents were – how very proud they would be to see what St. Luke’s has become.  From the beginning, St. Luke’s has prospered and grown because of its steadfast philosophy of strong stewardship.  And now it is our turn to “pay it forward” by sharing generously for our future.