Welcome Visits

by Robyn Adams

When I led a small group of young adults a few years ago, I became burdened for the elderly homebound of our church. I coordinated a Saturday-afternoon event to connect the two groups.

First, I asked my husband, a pastor at the church, for the names, phone numbers, and addresses of the older members who were unable to attend services. (Be sure to communicate your plans when you request such information from your pastor.) On the day of the event, we called these members to ask permission to stop by with care bags.

Before making the visits, our group put together the care bags, using bright, colorful sacks for visual appeal. Each contained items such as cookies, nuts, fruit (for diabetics), and large-print Christian magazines. We then broke into groups of three. Each group visited two or three homebound members. When we dropped off the bags, we said, "We made this bag for you to remind you that your church loves you." Many of the elderly accepted the bags with grateful tears in their eyes. Those we visited gladly welcomed us into their homes, which allowed us to spend time talking with and getting to know them.

This outreach became a regular activity in our small group. The elderly loved having young adults visit them, and the young adults enjoyed getting to know unfamiliar members of the church. Our visits also enabled us to pray intelligently for these new friends. Now when we saw their names on the church prayer list, we had a face to put with the name.

~Discipleship Journal, July/August 2008, Issue 166, pg. 84