On Sunday afternoon, August 28, a small army of volunteers invaded the Terrace Level of the AYMC and began to transform the space for some special guests. Tables were set with tablecloths, china, crystal, candles and beautiful centerpieces. The lights were dimmed, and soft music played. Nearby, “comfort stations” were set up by people specially trained in chair massage, hand massage, mindfulness and yoga exercises and art making. A “sensory room” was filled with equipment and therapists for children with special needs. Quiet spaces and recreational games were available everywhere you looked. At 4pm, our guests were welcomed by a team of greeters and a happy-to-see-you therapy dog named Bella. At 6pm, our church hosts served a delicious meal. Scriptures of comfort and blessing were read, and we departed.
Jesus said, “The greatest among you would be your servant,” but those among us who do the rigorous, unceasing, draining work of caregiving are often invisible. It makes sense that the church find ways to say, “We see you! We know that you give more than your share and that – even as you model Christ for us all – your own needs are often neglected. Come lean on us awhile!” Attendees were grateful, sharing how healing the evening was to them and to never doubt its importance or effectiveness. As member/supporters of our ministries, you made this Caregiver Respite Event possible!