A number of years ago during Vacation Bible School, I taught the kids a song called "Dorcas". The kids loved it because they could sing "Dork" very loud and "us" very soft and get away with it. The song was about Dorcas, whose story was told in Acts 9: 36-42. A very generous woman, she sewed and gave away clothes to widows. When she died she was raised by Peter.
Today I had lunch with our own "Dorcases", the Ministers of the Cloth. This is a group in our church that has met since 1996 to sew baptism quilts for infants baptised in our church. Over the years their numbers and projects expanded. Today they meet every Tuesday and were recently featured in a local newspaper and on a tv news show for their work with Quilts for Soldiers which is a charity that gives patriotic-themed quilts to wounded soldiers at Walter Reed Army Hospital. I am a long-time member of the group, but since becoming a staff member at the church I am not able to sew every week.
While doing some research for the Sunday School class I am teaching this week on the future of the postmodern church, I came across some statistics from the Barna group that stated that church members' participation in small groups had grown from 12% to 20% since 1994. This group has certainly more than doubled in size since 1996 and has become the model for small group development in our church because it has successfully blended service, fellowship and devotion in its meetings.
We're proud to follow in the footsteps of Dorcas, and we're even proud to be "Dorks"!