Note to Friends of Stonecroft readers: In this script, we’ve included some cues to enhance the story. In addition to underlined phrases for you to personalize for your group situation, we’ve included words in parenthesis () for facial and voice expressions, reading cues, and pronunciations. Words in boldface should be emphasized. Thank you for your help in telling the Stonecroft story!
(smile) Good afternoon!
Our name of group is one of hundreds of similar groups across the U.S. under the name of “Stonecroft.” In these Stonecroft groups, women come together to develop friendships and care for their communities. Most importantly, they see lives change. Today, I’m going to tell you about one of our national outreaches that touches the lives of women in a unique way. This outreach is Stonecroft Military. (slight pause)
Teasia (TEE-sah) and Robin disembarked the cargo plane in the dark of a winter night that would last four months long. Their mission was to brighten the lives of a couple dozen U.S. servicewomen stationed in Thule (TOO-lee), Greenland. This is America’s northernmost military installation. And the two Stonecroft Military leaders only had 24 hours to accomplish this task!
The Thule chaplain noticed that some of the women at the base were as emotionally desolate as the landscape around them. They were lonely. They lacked community. They longed to get back in touch with their feminine side. And, Christmas was coming.
These servicewomen needed a dose of Stonecroft Military! The chaplain had worked previously with our military organization when he was at a different base, so he asked for Stonecroft’s help at Thule. Teasia and Robin responded to the chaplain’s request. Their suitcase weights were limited for the 3,000-mile trip, so the leaders took care not to pack a lot of their personal items. Instead, they used the extra space for jewelry, bath and body sets, Bibles, inspirational resources, and Christmas cards for the military women signed by women they didn’t even know. All these items were intended to make each recipient feel special.
The heartwarming 24 hours consisted of facials, a specially catered luncheon in a festively decorated room, a fun Zumba® (ZOOM-bah) workout session, distribution of the small gifts, and lots of laughter to uplift their spirits. A follow-up inspirational time uplifted their souls. These women were living and working at the isolated top of the world. So, all the events were designed to help them feel honored, (pause) valued, (pause), known, (pause) and loved.
The Greenland mission was a little over five years ago. Stonecroft Military continues to brighten and value the lives of military wives and servicewomen today. Volunteers are invited by chaplains to hold events and small groups to meet specific needs on the posts and bases where they are granted access. There are specialized activities for mothers and their children. Others are outreaches that speak to hard issues these military women face in their personal lives.
A few months ago, key leaders known as the National Military Team, shared with Stonecroft staff that one of their biggest concerns was gaining access to more bases and posts around the country. They were praying for additional contacts who could invite their presence and activities to help women in the armed forces community. Stonecroft Military leaders had the experience and commitment. They just needed the access.
The very day they shared their concern, they were informed they’d been given clearance to work with the wives of chaplains in the (slowly) Navy, Army, Marines, and Coast Guard! They are also now granted the opportunity to lead an outreach to female recruits going through basic training. That’s up to 100 younger women beginning a new phase of life in the military. What an opportunity!
(smile) Prayers were answered.
Next month, I’ll give you an insider’s look at what happened at a recent boot camp for new recruits and how Stonecroft Military made the difference in women’s lives. Our military outreach is just one area of how Stonecroft helps women where they are, as they are. Even if they’re at the top of the world.
As we prepare to receive donations for Stonecroft, we ask you to consider the many women from all walks of life, who will be made to feel valued, connected, and loved through your support.
(Explain how to give: envelopes, etc.)
If you are a first-time guest, please feel no expectation to give at this time. It’s an honor to share with you part of our Stonecroft story.
(slight pause) You and I can bring hope and help to places we could never reach on our own, to women we may never know. Join us in reaching women where they are, as they are.