I remember so vividly watching the news on TV about the devastating fire that destroyed Ruckersville Baptist Church.  We had visited the church several years before and I remember feeling so sad hearing the news.  During the week that followed, the news reports stated that church services would be held that next Sunday in the church’s pavilion.  I remember talking to my husband, Doug, and saying, “I feel like we should go there on Sunday.”  He felt the same and so we went.  

 As we walked behind the charred structure of the church that Sunday morning and approached the outdoor pavilion, we found smiling faces, warm hugs, and a profound feeling of God’s love and Spirit.  Our initial visit left us feeling an immediate connection, and afterward, we were drawn back to the church time and time again.

A short time later, my mother’s health declined, and as I was her full time caregiver, life became extremely difficult for our family over the next year. Though we were unable to make it to church services much of this time, the church family sent emails and cards and kept us on their prayer list.  We felt the love and faith of all the members, which truly helped see us through such a trying time.  

We have since transferred our membership to RBC and have felt the Lord calling us to serve Him in a larger way.  Through RBC’s programs and ministries, we have been blessed with a number of opportunities for service.  We have worked with children during Vacation Bible School and Sunday School (I am currently the Sunday School Director and Doug is helping to teach a class).  I serve on the Floral Committee, which gives me the chance to design floral arrangements and help to supply flowers for the altar.  We have also enjoyed participating with the Trunk or Treat event at Halloween that offers the local community a safe and loving place for children to trick-or-treat.  Over the years, we have also been able to help fill shoeboxes for Operation Christmas Child that RBC strongly supports.  This year I hope to feel even more a part of this amazing mission as I join other RBC members to help Samaritan’s Purse in packaging and shipping shoeboxes from one of their warehouses. RBC strongly encourages all its members to respond when our loving Lord calls us to serve, and the church has been incredibly supportive of several outreach missions that my husband and I have started on our own.  

From the first moment we walked into Ruckersville Baptist Church we have felt God’s Spirit and have been welcomed into the warm embrace of a compassionate and loving family of believers.  We have been truly blessed to be a part of this community.  

 -Annie Dodd