"Healing Hands, Healing Hearts"

"America Rises" , "Saved to Serve"

"Mindy's Story", "Katie's Song"

"Aunt Esther", "Mr. Gary", "No Problem", "Beast of Burden", "Uncle Rob", "The Major"

"His Name Meant Happiness", "When 'Uncle' Got Drunk" , "A Match Made in Heaven"

"Rosalee's Gift", "God Closes a Door", "Breaking Chains"


This collections of stories came about when my Corps Officer approached me about becoming the Community Care Ministry Coordinator for the Kearny, New Jersey Corps. She explained that League of Mercy would soon be undergoing a change...broadening its scope beyond the standard group hospital visits at the holidays. She felt that I would be a good fit for the position, and that my unique abilities and life experience would enable the transition for our corps to progress more smoothly. I found that hard to picture.

I had been what I call a "renegade fringe member" of League of Mercy for over ten years. Work and family schedules had made it difficult for me to be a regular part of the brigade, made up primarily of retired Home League members. I always felt welcome, don't get me wrong, but they didn't really need me, they were all so GOOD at it! My somewhat unorthodox skill set didn't exactly fall within the traditional realm of League of Mercy visitation.

So, I operated "under the radar". Scrubbing bathrooms and delivering medicines as a hospice volunteer in a Jewish home. Keeping in touch with family members after their loved one's passing. Acting as advocate for seniors in long-term care. Delivering groceries to shut-ins. Attempting to learn Spanish to bridge the widening gap between our Corps and the rapidly changing neighborhood we serve. Supporting and encouraging the musical forces at another community church when the choirmaster suddenly quit.

I was put in touch with the Divisional League of Mercy/Community Care Ministry Coordinator. As she explained the new expanded program, I saw how what I had been doing all these years fit beautifully within the new parameters.

I also had a feeling that it would be difficult to explain this to people who were accustomed to the traditional League of Mercy.

So, I put together a set of illustrative stories. The names have been changed and some details have been altered to preserve privacy. I think these stories show the beauty of the Community Care Ministry of the Salvation Army.

There is a place for anyone who has a desire to serve. The uniqueness of each person's gifts and talents come together to make a richer and more far-reaching ministry.

But most importantly, the blessings flow both ways.

In Christ's Love, many blessings! Teri Hislop


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