Thursday, December 13, 2012
In 2006, Wayside Presbyterian Church started its Signal Mountain Social Services Christmas outreach ministry in which members sing carols, drop off gifts and visit with seniors served by SMSS.
The ministry has grown over the years, with the number of seniors increasing to such a degree in 2011 that it took seven hours for church members to visit every home on their list.
“This year, instead of canceling or cutting back on the ministry, we decided to ask area churches and schools to help in this wonderful project,” said Karen Ellis of Wayside Presbyterian, which has 29 SMSS seniors and eight home-bound Wayside members scattered across the mountain on its list of homes to visit.
Groups from St. Timothy’s Episcopal Church, Signal Mountain United Methodist Church and Thrasher Elementary School have stepped up to take over visiting three seniors each from Wayside’s list, to whom they will also sing Christmas carols and deliver gifts.
“In the spirit of the Christmas season, they are helping save this ministry on Signal Mountain,” said Ellis.
In addition to visiting the seniors served by SMSS, St. Timothy’s Episcopal Youth Community group will also be visiting senior members of its own parish, said Pam Bracher, a parent volunteer for St. Timothy’s EYC.
“Part of our mission with St. Timothy’s EYC is to provide local service opportunities in the Signal Mountain and Chattanooga communities, targeting service projects that keep our kids active locally so they can see the impact on a daily basis,” said Bracher. “This is a great opportunity to get out into the Signal Mountain community, leave behind a little bit of ourselves and brighten [the seniors’] evening.”