Once a year, the normally empty parking lot behind the Circle Seven Express on Mt. Olivet Rd NE turns into a music-filled, uplifting community gathering site. On this past Saturday, Aug. 23, various churches and ministries in the Trinidad area joined together to put on Impact 2014, an event that included, in the words of the flyer, “Fellowship, Fun, Food, and a Good ole’ Time!”
From blocks away, one could hear the sounds of gospel music and passionate preaching. The smell of hamburgers and hotdogs drew in passersby. Children, their faces painted with colorful flowers and animal whiskers, shrieked with laughter. Inspired visitors gathered by the speakers projecting gospel songs and the smooth words of Associate Pastor J. Jenkins and Elder Andrew Murphy.
The event aimed to raise awareness in the community of the many issues that pervade the area – drug addiction, homelessness – and of the work that local ministries are doing to help people. The Abundant Light Ministry of Hope partnered with other churches and ministries to provide free clothing, food, and gospel CDs to over 250 guests.
Murphy, an elder in the Abundant Light Ministry, said the event aimed to, “bring people into relationships and introduce them to the love of God.” Much of Murphy’s work is focused on helping the men at the Catholic Charities Shelter, a nearby homeless shelter. Some of the guests on Saturday came from the shelter, where they meet weekly with Murphy and Henry Kenely, another ministry leader.
One of the men from the shelter, Mike, walked away from the event feeling “positive energy.” He said the event demonstrated that, “someone cares about us.”
The rain was no hindrance to the shining success of Impact 2014. The event concluded with prayer and blessings aimed at children and individuals in need in the community. The ministries distributed the remainder of the clothing supplies and clothing, truly making a difference for families in this area of Trinidad.