By Joe Beran*
While visiting her mother in a nursing home during Christmas in 2007, Carolyn Thompson noticed that several of the residents there had few visitors, and no festive decorations.
She went home, made 12 small trees and distributed them to those folks whom she had noticed. They were so warmly welcomed that she made more the following year.
Thompson recruited several friends and school-aged children to help her with this now budding ministry of Berlin United Methodist Church (Three Rivers District). This year the group created and distributed 690 trees of different colors and styles – enough for every resident of a care facility in Knox County!
The ministry has richly blessed all who participate in it and has stirred ideas of new ways that the congregation can impact the lives of people in the community. Raemarie Oatman is organizing a church-wide effort to make hand-crafted greeting cards to be included with each tree.
Thompson would love to see this great ministry spread to other counties.
*Joe Beran is pastor of Berlin and Batemantown UMCs in the Three Rivers District.