This week we hear from me, Mary Grierson! This first paragraph is usually where I rant and rave about how awesome my amazing co-workers are, but I will not be doing that about myself, as it would be dreadfully awkward. Instead I will just list a few characteristics that are classic "Mary at work" characteristics: I am quite chatty and I love talking to my co-workers, I ask A LOT of questions, I love to learn new things, and I am a compulsive cleaner. You can often find me cleaning the staff microwave or coffee machine (for fun) on my lunch break. I love to clean, and I also love to take care of my co-workers, so it's really a win-win.
What is your role at SDBC and how long have you worked here?
I am the Community Life Coordinator at SDBC! This means that I take care of everything that could fall under community life, whether that is a ministry inside the church or a program that we run for the South Delta community. I oversee community groups, church wide events, and special programs (things like special Christmas Sunday's, the 60th anniversary, or Alpha, etc.), staff events, Starfish Pack, preparations for the SDBC Tutoring Program, and many other things.
What is something about you that people in the church might be surprised to discover?
Let me think...I took lessons and played the drums for 5 years! I was also part of a church girl band where I played the drums. We were called the "Hot Pinkz," like the colour hot pink, but with a Z so that people knew we were cool. Oh, to be 12 again!
What are some of the things you love most about being part of the SDBC community/family?
The thing I love most about our SDBC family is the love, care, and support that our church family freely gives to one another. I have been a recipient of this love, care, and support and it is truly a gift. When I first started coming to this church in 2014, this characteristic was what attracted me to the church community; people seemed to really care about each other and participate in each other's lives.
How has your role shifted and changed since the start of COVID-19?
My role has shifted in so many ways! To start, when COVID became an issue in BC in March, Paul came into my office one day and said, "Mary, we need to choose an online platform to maintain community, can you choose one and help everyone use it?" Now, this is awesome, because, like I mentioned previously, I love learning new things. However, if you know me well, you know I am not the most tech savvy person, so it was quite an interesting task for me. However, I read through many articles on "How to Zoom" and became versed enough with it to be able to help some of you, my beloved church family, use it! Another change was how the Starfish team operated. As I have written about in other stories, during the first lockdown a small crew packed out of a home. We are now back to packing at the church, but again, with a very small crew. A lot of time has been spent applying for grants and securing funds for Starfish so that we can continue to grow this year. One last thing I want to mention is that I also have become a new member of the tech team/video crew on staff! Which, again, is hilarious, because as of February 2020 you would not have ever seen me on the tech team. Our team has been amazing with answering all my questions and helping me become a member of this team.
What are some of the challenges and triumphs you have encountered in your life and work since the beginning of COVID-19?
At the beginning of this COVID journey I really struggled with the loneliness of working from home for the first time. My husband, Phil, has continued to go into work everyday, so I had to get used to being alone and developing new rhythms and habits. The love and prayer from my co-workers really helped me through this time. It has also been hard not seeing our church family every Sunday. I long for the day when I can see you come through the doors and give you a big hug, or an in-person smile. However, I am hopeful because I know that this is only a temporary reality and God is sovereign over this COVID situation. God has still been working during COVID, and he has been working powerfully. As Jordan mentioned a few Sundays ago, people are still coming to Christ and asking questions about him during this time. We also see God working through the community and orchestrating Starfish receiving a $15,000 grant! How incredible is that?!? These funds help guarantee that we can meet the needs of every student in South Delta who signs up to be part of the program. One triumph in our Starfish Pack program is that we are now serving the high schools! Originally we did not think that they would be interested in the program, however, they were! We are now able to begin to meet the needs of the high schoolers in our community!
How can we pray for you in this season of life?
Please pray for the continued health and safety of our staff and church family. Please also pray that the Starfish Pack continues to grow. We now have the funds, we just need more students to come forward, as we know that the need is there.
Click here to email encouragement to Mary.