Kiwanis club helps church, visits lonely people | National Life - Blue Mountain Eagle

Hammond Kiwanis Club members made a mission of mercy to a church community in the Lake Charles area that was extensively damaged by Hurricane Laura.

The Sulphur church has numerous older

members who were unable to do what needed to be done on their own, Kiwanis members said.

Club President George Anthon was accompanied by his wife Gina and Kiwanis members Rev. Angie Kretzer and Elliott Sanders, along with Sanders’ two children. They spent a long, hot day clearing branches and debris from the campus of the First Christian Church of Sulphur.

Kretzer, pastor of the First Christian Church of Hammond, said of the venture, “A year ago I visited the First Christian Church in Sulphur when the congregation celebrated its 100th anniversary. It was a lovely occasion and the memory of that time was still on my mind when we went back to help the church recover from the storm.

“Trees were down around the church, and the congregation’s lovely prayer garden was all a mess. We spent the day working to help clear debris from the church grounds,” she said.

The Sulphur church’s pastor, Rev. Bobbie Yellott, and her husband, Randy, were most gracious for the help brought by the Hammond Kiwanis members, Kretzer said.

“Our club president, George Anthon, did an incredible job with his chain saw. He worked hard all day cutting up the trees and branches so that we could haul the wood to the roadside for eventual collection. At the end of the day we had cleared the church property of much of the debris,” she said.

“It was a very positive experience. This was a first step in helping others to regain a sense of normalcy in their lives. This what we are asked to do, to assist our neighbors when we can. Helping others in situations such as storm recovery brings out the best in who we are as caring persons,” Reverend Kretzer said.

Also, Kretzer, Gina Anthon and a few others have started making visits to various places in the Hammond community where residents have been largely kept apart during the coronavirus pandemic. The group plays some musical instruments and sings for those who are basically shut ins.

“For instance, we recently visited a nursing home and we had a great time. We couldn’t go inside the building, but we sang to them through the windows and the residents really enjoyed hearing us sing to them, Kretzer said.

“We visited Options, an agency that treats the needs of the disabled, and they asked us to sing Christmas carols so that is what we did,” she said. “We sing, say a few prayers, and pass out some small treats. It’s a way of bringing joy to those who need to be uplifted during these trying times brought on by the coronavirus. It’s people showing their care for others, and that is part of the Kiwanis spirit. This is been a rewarding experience.”

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