Monday, October 12, 2015

Feeding The Flock

One of the things that I love about my church, is its emphasis on missions.   All ages are involved in serving others in some way---from very young children to senior adults!  Months ago, I was asked to co-lead a brand new event at our church.  Patterned after an event from another church in our area, it was a combination cook-off and Silent Auction.   Large dinners, etc. are NOT my area of expertise, but mission stuff  IS, so I agreed to help.

Ann and I began meeting together, along with one of our associate pastors (and my friend), Mimi in the summer.   We brainstormed ideas and decided that the scripture we would use for inspiration was from Matthew---the story of the Jesus feeding the crowd with 5 loaves and 2 fish.   In the story, Jesus' disciples are overwhelmed by the sheer number of people and ask Jesus what to do.  He replies, "You give them something to eat."  (Matthew 14:16)   Since we feel that we are all called to do the same, it seemed the perfect scripture for this event.  I sent our ideas and theme to Jana and she came up with an AWESOME logo for us.
For the weeks leading up to the event, we worked with our committee to secure "chefs" from the church and getting items donated for the Silent Auction.  At one point, we were worried that there were not enough cooks, that we began soliciting them ourselves.  But, thankfully, our church family came through and we ended up with 30+ people committing to cook a dish and a huge selection of items for our silent auction!

I was also in charge of decorations, and decided to make paper "fish" to put in baskets with bread.  I printed out B/W drawings and then used watercolors to paint them.  Callie helped me . . . and so did Luke.  A little.   After they were painted, I cut them out and stapled them together, stuffing napkins in the middle to give them a little bit of dimension.  While definitely unique, they turned out kind of cool.
We spent a few hours on Saturday setting up the tables, decorating and getting everything ready.
I kept things pretty simple, but the gym was looking pretty good by the time we left.
Admission was $10, and for that price, adults received a plate and free reign to taste all the goodies, bid on the silent auction items and vote (they were each given 10 tickets) on their favorite chefs.
My biggest fear, after we had secured so many cooks and auction items, was that no one would show up.   But, I shouldn't have worried.  The crowd came!
People came and ate and visited and shopped.
There was a kids' area with a place to color and special kid-friendly treats.   And, of course, the kids had their own tickets to vote with!
Our youth even teamed up to prepare three different selections!
Despite difficulties with our sound system, our amazing M.C. persevered, keeping everyone posted on the progress of the auction and then announcing the winning bids.
The winning chef was awarded "The Golden Spoon" award!!  

Well, actually, there was a tie . . . between the Pulled Pork that this Ty (in the white shirt and cap below) prepared. . .
and the Whoopie Pies that these two youth prepared.
Since we only had one actual "spoon", Ty let the girls have it.  They were thrilled!!!
It was great!  I was exhausted, but so happy that things went well and we were able to raise a substantial amount of money for missions!!   I think we consider the evening a success and something we will do again next year---and next year should be a little bit easier since we now have this one behind us.

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