Posts Tagged ‘Fellowship’

Story by Bev Carroll. Photos by Susan Brown.

FLO groupGod created us for fellowship with Him. But in His incredible mercy, He gives us fellowship with each other so that we can be encouraged in our relationship with Him. That fellowship can be both a place for us to use our gifts and to be fed as we grow in understanding who He is and who we are. For Ladies Only (FLO) began as a way for our church to concentrate on this fellowship for women.

 “Besides the obvious – study and learning, we fellowship (eat and laugh). One of the biggest benefits for me is I have gotten to know my church better, and I have FUN!” —Gwen Garrett

Bev CarrollThe events and programs FLO sponsors are as unique as the women who organize and attend them, and their reasons for participating are as varied as the ages and stages of life they represent. Shannon Le says: “As a mom to four small children and wife of a former pastor, FLO has been a safe place to share very deep and intimate life experiences with women who loved and encouraged me, without judgment or criticism.”

FLO Bible studyOur goal to provide discipleship and Christian fellowship opportunities led to the formation of intergenerational Bible studies. These were particularly helpful to Evelyn Cronin: “I was at a really low point in my spiritual life when I first came to FLO Monday Bible Study. I value the age range of women in attendance – some older, some younger – as it gives me perspectives so different from my own. I’ve grown as a woman, a mother, a wife, and above all, as a child of God.”

FLO teaIn addition to book clubs, trips to Christian conferences, preparation for the week the CARITAS women spend at FBC every July, there is the annual Christmas Tea, perhaps the most visible of FLO’s events. While the tea requires much work by volunteers, it is an effort of great joy. Debbie Blankenship talked about her experience helping with a tea that closely followed her mother’s death. “I arrived on Friday morning to help prepare the food, overwhelmed with sadness. However, everyone in that kitchen was so kind, and they all wrapped their arms around me, showing me how much they cared. I found out during that weekend how much the women of FLO mean to me!”

Each of us finds a place in FLO that is the most meaningful. For Janet Chase “the Monday morning Bible study made the greatest positive impression on me, both for my emotional and spiritual health, when I was transitioning from job loss a few years ago. I’ll be forever grateful for a safe place to share, grow, and pray with strong Christian women.”

FLO-conferenceMy favorite part of FLO is being able to watch women combine their unique gifts and weaknesses and passion for God in the service of His people. The strengths of all women involved combine into a perfect whole as they serve each other and our church. In them, I see a glimpse of the body of Christ at work in our church and our world.

FLO Crew: Judy Watkins says, “It has been an honor to serve on this team and get to know and work with these lovely Christian ladies!” The following serve with Judy: Anne Ball, Debbie Blankenship, Gail Broughton, Lorna Brown, Susan Brown, Beverly Carroll, Janet Chase, Donna Earley, Pam Franklin, Spencer Huber, Maureen Lipford, Kaky Minter, and Lynn Turner, staff liaison.

Contact: Bev Carroll, 804-387-1154; FBCRichmond.org/FLO

Bev CarrollBev Carroll is a teacher, speaker, and author of two books: He Wants You to Know and God Chooses People Like You. Her passion is to help others see God’s word as absolutely relevant in their daily lives. Bev taught English and Humanities in high school and college. She and her husband Jay have two sons and one perfect dog.

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