April 21, 2017
I promised you a post about Dare Challenge (in the Easter drama) and a Dare Challenge post you shall have!
One of the most heartfelt moments of the weekend for me was when I was standing in the lobby as people were coming in. I saw a middle-aged couple walk in the door and immediately spot their son who was dressed in his costume for the play. They ran to each other and the dad gave his son a tearful hug that lasted several minutes.
When I described the scene to Steve later that night, he told me that the young man’s family had driven five hours one way, just to see their recovering-from-addiction son play a role in a play depicting the life-changing story of Jesus Christ.
The Dare challenge guys did a great job serving as greeters at each of the entrances, in addition to serving as ushers and, of course, acting in the play.
Colton, the guy on the right, went through the program and is now on staff. He leads our youth group (under Steve’s oversight) and is attending school to be a pastor.
And here are a few more shots of the Dare Challenge men in action.
The two seated fellas entered Dare Challenge just before the performances started so they weren’t able to do any acting. We wanted to involve them in some way though, so I trained James (on the left) to help with our projection; Jim (on the right), was a tech assistant. They were so thrilled to be a part of the event and did a great job.
Some of you may remember that I wrote a few years ago about a young man named Cody.
This is what he looked like then.
Here he is three years later.
Cody is still volunteers with Dare Challenge and although he lives a couple of hours away, does everything he can to help them out in whatever way he can. He came to the drama this weekend and to our Easter morning service; it was so great to see him doing well.
One of the greatest joys of the 3-nights of performances is that we received an offering each night for Dare Challenge. By the last night, we had raised just under $4,000 which we presented to Dustin Daniels, the executive director on Easter morning. (Mary Ann, the drama writer/director, is on his right.)
He was accompanied by his guys, some of whom were in costume for a part of the drama they were going to reprise later in the service.
Each student is only charged $800 for 10 months of residency at the center, although the actual cost of providing housing, food, training, counselling, etc. is about $17,000 per man. Gifts like what our church and community gave last week make a huge difference in the lives of these guys trying to get free from addiction. If you are interested in joining us in helping them, you can go to the Dare Challenge link.
I’ll close out with a few miscellaneous photos.
The woman on the left has been Sarah’s boss at Food Lion for three years; she recently cut her hours at Food Lion in order to open an early learning center which means she is also MY boss too, since I work at the center a few hours a week. The girl in the middle is the oldest daughter of our wonderful angel dancer, Elizabeth. The young man on the right doesn’t attend our church but he lives in the neighborhood and had been to several performances over the years. He finally just came right out and asked if he could be a part of it. I love that!
On Saturday night, for the first time ever, Sarah and I got to sit and watch a church production together. In the past, we’ve either been performing in it, or working in the tech booth. As we were waiting for it to start, Rachel, a friend of Sarah’s stopped by for a hello and a hug. Nice to see our gone away college girl getting to reconnect with the Manteo people she loves.
This was the view as people were coming in.
And another view from the balcony, about 20 minutes before starting.
Such a lot of work and a lot of fun. Steve said he feels like it will take him at least a month to truly recover from it all. His job this Saturday is to oversee the taking down and packing away of all those set pieces; not an easy task when you look at the complexity of that stage. Plenty of work, for sure, but plenty of smiles, too.
Here’s Steve with Claudia and Claudia’s husband, Doug, who is a Manteo police officer.
It’s such a joy to get to use our creative gifts to support Dare Challenge, build community, and present not just a great story but the greatest story ever told.
Thrift stores, fuzzy socks
and conversing with my Yorkie
are all on the list of things I love.