This year, Calvary has been connecting out in Winston-Salem in some unique ways. Since we believe that every great work of God begins in prayer, we came together on March 10 for a large-scale prayer walk. Over 75 people gathered at our three campuses to prayer walk in residential areas with high populations of unchurched households. We call these areas “Lost Pockets.” We also visited some of our local partners to learn more about their ministries and to pray for their staffs and any pressing needs they had.
“During our prayer walk that morning, we were put into small groups and we were sent to the Cleveland Avenue neighborhood to learn about and pray for Kids Xtreme. This ministry is seeing God transform lives as they love on and teach underprivileged children. We walked and prayed in two neighborhoods that morning and met several people. We found that people were willing to tell us how we can pray for them and it naturally lead to talking about Jesus in most cases.”
“Prayer walking neighborhoods is powerful. God has used it to shape my thoughts and prayers towards others. It is opening up opportunities for me to speak the peace of Christ into the brokenness of our city. I am so encouraged by His love for them. I know God wants to change the hearts of the people in our city and His people are the means by which He will do it.”
“I have had the opportunity to go back with Calvary a few times since this first outreach. As I walk through this neighborhood, I pray that God will free them from the darkness and bondage that is evident in their lives. I plead with God to pour out His Spirit on these people that they may know Him. I know that He desires to do this. Prayer is the means by which God changes my heart and mind and directs me how to pray for them.” – Mary Beth Vann
Restoring hope to broken lives and making known the truth and grace of Jesus to the city
Following the prayer walk, Logan Sides and Nina Hundley coordinated 13 service projects for over 170 people on May 12. We called this “Serve Saturday” since it is a one-day opportunity to mobilize families, small groups, and individuals to connect out in our community. The goal for Serve Saturday is to provide easy on-ramps periodically throughout the year for us to live together on God’s mission. This day of service allows Calvary to support our local partners, enter into our Lost Pockets, and gain exposure to the needs all around us.
“We spent Serve Saturday at Southfork Assisted Living with a large number of volunteers. The partnership Calvary has there includes games, cards, crafts, praying with residents, songs, and a monthly Bible study. I was encouraged by the concept of community I saw there. It was an outpouring of love to the elderly in simple ways like offering to pray with them. The amount of opportunities to share the gospel in this location was prominent and completely surprised me. We were able to spend time with a lady who was resistant to the gospel.
It was a beautiful display of the gospel to watch the volunteers loving on the elderly, reading scripture, offering prayer, and just spending time with them. What I found on Serve Saturday was more than just a service project; I saw the incredible spirit of volunteers come alive by sharing Christ. I watched the eyes of residents light up, smiles on their faces, and a twinge of excitement in the air. There are many ways to continue volunteering with simple acts such as coming to pray with these residents, or using any talents and gifts to show them the love of Christ. I can hardly wait for the next opportunity!” – Nina Hundley
The next step for local outreach is the most exciting yet. Calvary is participating in “Crash The Dash” from Sunday, August 5th through Saturday, August 11th. Crash The Dash is a week where churches from across Winston-Salem join together to serve our city. Through partnerships with various ministries and non-profits, we will make a concentrated push to love our city by meeting needs and building relationships to the glory of God.
Crash The Dash is one week that we unite to serve our city, but our hope is that you would find a place to serve others year-round! Crash The Dash is a great way to build relationships with these ministry partners and find a place to serve regularly outside the walls of your church. Registration for individuals and groups is easy using the website https://www.crashthedash.com/. You can expect to see a variety of project requests at various time throughout the week, so look around and find one or two ways that you can invest in our city.
“Since moving to Winston-Salem last summer, I have had many opportunities to see how God is moving powerfully through strong, healthy churches. They are restoring hope to broken lives and making known the truth and grace of Jesus to the city. I am excited about Calvary joining other local churches to proclaim the gospel with our words and actions in a united display of Christian service. I hope that we can build relationships with those outside the church by loving them where they are as we meet real needs.” – Logan Sides