A Banquet Anniversary
Saturday night we served a banquet to 240 people who came to support a vital inner-city ministry. We realized this was something of an anniversary as we had been serving this group for 25 years; this also marked the inception of our banquet ministry. The first time we were asked to come and help at one of their early fundraisers, we quickly ascertained that it was a rather chaotic event. The people who were actually the leaders, teachers, and ministers were in the kitchen with us, frantically trying to serve the guests!
To say there was a drastic lack of leadership and direction would be a mild understatement. Everyone was pitching in and trying to help but there was no way for the hosts to visit, explain, or answer questions about their ministry, much less enjoy a meal. And voila! A seed was planted in us and we realized that we could offer our hands in service.
Though we are few in number, we have a vision for unity in the body of Christ. Currently we are blessed to serve many banquets each year, Some are gourmet, catered affairs, and some we cook ourselves. This service is offered up free of charge, asking only for out of pocket expenses such as food or decorations as well as covering our gas money. We have learned to be very economical, saving considerable money. We cook pretty well, and we clean up too!
Some put in their reservations as soon as their banquet is over for their next year’s event. A few years ago we served a banquet where the late Frank Pastore was the speaker. “What a neat ministry,” he said. “Come on my radio show and I will gladly promote your services!” While we appreciated his enthusiasm, we weren’t sure we could handle the outcome, so we never pursued the opportunity.
But we gladly promote the need for brothers and sisters to get creative and use whatever gifts you have to support, encourage, and edify the bigger body of Christ. This may help fulfill our Lord’ s last prayers, “…that they may become perfectly one, so that the world may know that thou hast sent me…” John17:23