Sandy McIlrath is seeing changes happening at Brookside Community Church and the possibility of those changes continuing and expanding keeps her coming back each month to work with the church’s children.
As a member of Northview Church, Sandy wanted to join in her church’s outreach program to Brookside, so she met with Children’s Education Director, Mindy Cederquist. After that meeting, she knew volunteering at Brookside was what she wanted to do.
“Mindy won my heart over,” Sandy said. “There’s such a need for people who will listen to the children and who will be a stable influence in their lives.”
She admits her first Sunday at the church was a little rough. To her, the atmosphere felt negative and cool and no one spoke to her. But when she walks into the church now, there’s a change. “There is a feeling of love, joy, and warmth in the air,” Sandy said. “Everyone is friendly and the love of God is present.”
This fall Sandy began team teaching with Brookside member, Tara Thomas. She said their personalities complement each other well and they work well together. “The challenges for me are in seeking the ways and words that can help change behaviors—and patience! But I love being part of a team that is working to let the children know there is a future for them.”
But the benefits are not just for Brookside’s children, she said. “I have made many new friends and I feel that I am helping Brookside’s children grow.”