By Megan Wimberley
People from Albert Einstein to Mother Teresa have spoken on the need for people to step out of their comfort zone and help others. Martin Luther King Jr. said, “Life’s persistent and most urgent question is ‘what are you doing for others?’”
Today I ask you the same question: “What are you doing for others?” Perhaps you had an answer to that question because you are currently serving others and helping the community. However, there are many people who aren’t doing any kind of service.
There is a great need in our world for compassionate people, but even closer to home, there is a great need in Plainview, Texas. That’s the point of Focus on Service– to let you know where and how you can serve. Today I’m going to be biased and tell you about something close to my heart: nursing home ministry.
My high school art teacher got me started on nursing home ministry. She had us make Valentine cards and take them to the residents at a couple of nursing homes. I met a few really cool people and realized how much that simple act meant to them.
I was blown away by how open and thankful the people were.
Ever since then I’ve done nursing home ministry off and on. I recently renewed that service when I found out that a fellow student, Curtis Beeman, was doing nursing home ministry as well.
Our goal is to get enough people that all of the residents are being visited. There are not set times; you just go visit with people when you have the chance. We have already met several really cool people.
The purpose of this ministry is to befriend people, to let them know that they are loved, to talk to them and to listen. It can be as simple as asking people how their day was or playing cards.
Sometimes it can be difficult. The resident may want you to do a lot of stuff for them like bring them water or walk around with them. But that is what service is about — serving others. For the most part, however, it is not hard; you just form relationships with people. If you like to talk, listen, play cards and hear about a person’s life you might be cut out for nursing home ministry.
We still need a lot more volunteers. There are many residents who don’t get to see anyone but the staff (which, by the way, is full of amazing people) and other residents, so your smiling face might be enough to brighten their day.
If you are interested you can e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org (please title as “nursing home ministry”).
We can really use any help we can get, even if you just want to try it out once and see what you think.