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Grace Unleashed to address 27 community projects

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Third year for church's day of service

By Marty Finley

For the third consecutive year, members of Grace Heartland Church are donating a Saturday to enhance their community.

The church is hosting Grace Unleashed, a massive day of service that will take the congregation throughout Elizabethtown to tackle landscaping, home repairs and deep cleanings of residences, businesses and local organizations.

Trisha Caudill, co-director of the program, said 27 projects have been lined up with approximately 300 volunteers. The group will be broken into teams and dispersed to work sites Saturday morning after breakfast, prayer and a time of fellowship at the church starting at 8 a.m. 

“There are no strings attached,” Caudill said of Grace Unleashed. “We do this because we want to serve. This is what we’re supposed to do.”

Work sites have been lined up at Elizabethtown Christian Academy, Clarity Solutions for Women, Feeding America, Heartland Elementary School, Hosparus, Mission Hope for Kids, Sunrise Children’s Services and Warm Blessings. An excursion to SpringHaven was canceled because of renovations at the domestic violence shelter, but a backup project is under development, she said.

Caudill said a team will pack backpacks full of food at Feeding America for hungry students, work at two different locations making repairs for Sunrise and complete a deep cleaning of Warm Blessings soup kitchen on East Dixie Avenue. They also will assist on five Habitat for Humanity repair projects, she said.

Other sites will have landscaping improvements made while the church plans to replace carpeting at ECA. A block party is on tap for children served by Mission Hope for Kids and local nursing home residents will get visits and gifts from the church as an outreach program for seniors in the community who are not accustomed to many guests, Caudill said.

The church, too, has lined up four “people’s projects” at local residences where teams will tackle a range of tasks, such as weatherizing homes and basic repairs the homeowners are unable to do.

Furthermore, a prayer team has been assigned to bless every individual work site, a photo and video team will capture footage of the day of service and a food ministry will deliver lunch to each site. The church will provide free childcare services at its facility on Pear Orchard Road for parents who volunteer, Caudill said.

Caudill said there are numerous Christians who desire to travel overseas on a foreign mission trip and address global needs, but this dream is not always financially realistic for families.

“This is a way people can give (of themselves),” Caudill said.

Those who have benefited from the work carried out through Grace Unleashed are eternally grateful, she said, and it offers a perfect platform to strip away individual desires and become the hands and feet of Jesus.

Beyond that, a day of service can knock the scales of ignorance off the eyes of workers who were clueless of local problems, Caudill said.

“It’s eye opening for a lot of people to see the really huge, tangible needs right here in E’town,” she said.

Marty Finley can be reached at 270-505-1762 or mfinley@thenewsenterprise.com.