The Men: Serve ministry at Houston's First follows the calling in Exodus 22:22 and James 1:27 to take care of the widows. On a typical Men: Serve Saturday, teams of men are assigned to widows in our church based on the needs she has and the skills of the men. The men may do yard work, landscaping, home repairs, car maintenance, and other projects. At the Men: Serve event in June 2020, 150 men adapted their approach so they could continue to safely and responsibly serve the widows during the coronavirus outbreak.
“While COVID-19 interrupts many of our lives, the needs of our widows don’t go on lockdown. We had to find a way to express God’s love appropriately in spite of the virus,” Minister to Men Eric Reed explains. “We saw the needs mounting for ladies as well as the need to be responsible by social distancing and wearing masks. Therefore, it was an easy decision to adapt how we seek to meet needs to ensure safety and success.”
Bill Neighbors volunteered at the June event and has been involved with Men: Serve for years. To him, Men: Serve is more than just a volunteer event that occurs on a Saturday.
“Men: Serve is more of a ministry to the widows where we are meeting their needs while we, the men, are being blessed by serving the Lord,” Neighbors share about the impact of the ministry. “Back before Men: Serve was organized in 2012, I felt a burden to serve the widows so seeing what this ministry is doing on a large scale blesses my heart immensely.”
There are several changes that the Men: Serve team made in order to safely serve the widows on their day of service in June. Men were deployed directly from their home to the assigned site instead of from The Loop Campus or Cypress Campus where they typically come together for a quick meeting at the start of the day. They only did work outside of the widows’ houses, and there was no face-to-face interaction with the widows. Each team (if they needed tools) sent a representative to the church where they checked out tools such as power washers, rakes, etc. Tools were returned to the church and wiped down with Clorox wipes and stored for future jobs. Also, the men did not return to the church for lunch after the event was over like they typically do.
One of the widows who was served during the June event was Kathy Crow, who has been assisted by Men: Serve teams for years.
“I missed them not coming in my house but that’s the price we have to pay right now. They were able to do some outside projects that needed to be done. They did things that they could do without me being exposed to them and vice versa,” Crow shares about the Men: Serve volunteers. “The men did a wonderful job and I visited with them. I opened the door and we talked from a social distance. We even incorporated a prayer at the end which they always do when they leave. It’s always a wonderful experience to have Men: Serve here.”
The next Men: Serve day of service is on Sat, Aug 8. Men wanting to serve must register online below by Fri, July 31.