Here's Mary's story.
The 40 Days of Community was merely a postscript to the last two years. My husband and I came from a large church in St Paul that we had attended for 11 years. We...began attending church at Five Oaks when it did not work to go to our regular church. We made the transition to be a regular attender in November of 2004. My father died in March of 2005. We made a move to become members of Five Oaks in April.
Kevin said that we needed to join a small group if we were going to get connected in this church. We checked out the Ennulat small group Sept 27, 2005, and prayed for Kevin who was having weird stomach aches. Two weeks later, our small group surrounded us as we learned Kevin had esophageal cancer. In that small group was a woman who lost her husband also to cancer 8 years prior, a couple with hospice experience, and a whole bunch of engineers Kevin could totally bond with. God knew what he was doing.
Kevin had quit his job as a contractor to have his medical work done, and, being a full-time home school mom with a little side business, I quickly increased that business to help with bills. A woman from the Care Ministry who had lost her husband to cancer called and wanted to connect and offer support.
Our small group helped shuttle kids when we were at doctor appointments. The guys made a pilgrimage to Mayo during the time Kevin was doing the 6 weeks of chemo and radiation. The small group brought meals, helped clean our home, whatever we needed. And members of the Care Ministry brought Christmas presents for our family, as we were buying chemo for Kevin for Christmas that year.
Our small group and members of the Care Ministry cried with us and prayed with us. They celebrated with us as Kevin came through the surgery in February and prayed Kevin into the best job he had ever gotten, as an IT person at Bremer Bank. Life was good and we were in the clear. (To be continued...)