The Ark crew and passengers at the James River State Park
Today we made the last “Ark” trip of the 2006-2007 season. The “Ark” is our church bus, and 28 of us made the trek to the James River State Park for a wonderful picnic lunch. Two ladies in our church, Joan Shelton and Ann Reynolds, started and run these day trips for senior adults each month.
Joan is Mrs. Noah, and Ann is her steady first-mate, as their storyline goes. The passengers are the (you guessed it) animals, but for the most part the herd behaves itself pretty well.
Debbie and I drove our van today because we had an overflow of four folks more than the bus would hold. Joan had the vision for these trips a year before we came to Chatham, and the church supported that vision by buying a new 26-passenger bus with air conditioning and comfortable seating.
Oh, the best part is that usually we have as many community residents as we do our members, although today I think I counted 18 Chatham Baptist folks. We’re the only church in our community with a bus, so others like to join us, and that’s absolutely great.
Today we had a covered-dish picnic, but on other trips we eat at interesting restaurants, tour historic sites, visit working farms, or just stop and enjoy the view. It’s a great ministry and our “regulars” look forward to the trips and sign up to reserve their seats.
In addition to the bus trips, Liz Whitehead hosts our Adult Fellowship, a monthly luncheon for senior adults once a month in our fellowship hall. Interestingly, there is not much overlap between the two groups, so we’re touching about 50 seniors with both activities.
I realize that bus trips and lunch programs are not particularly novel ideas. But, we’ve been hosting the luncheons for about 20-years, and the bus trips are going strong as the fifth anniversary approaches.
We’re a small church in a small town, and simple pleasures are appreciated.