Grace Tabernacle to handout school supplies

Published 12:00 am Thursday, August 5, 2004

Need school supplies for your children

and don’t know how you’re going to pay for them?

Go to three locations in Selma on Saturday, Aug. 7, and the first 300 children will receive a bag of school supplies compiled from school

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lists – and purchased from

Selma’s Wal-Mart.

Compliments of Gospel Tabernacle Church of God in Christ Outreach Ministry

and individual donors in that church.

According to Ghytana Goings, a math teacher at Selma High School who serves as youth director and volunteer coordinator

at Grace Tabernacle, the distribution program has been in place now for the past five years.

For the first four years, the distribution was on the fourth Sunday morning of August at the church, located at 1530 Lawrence St., she said.

“This is the first year to expand the program in a major way,” said Pastor John Grayson.

“We have so far purchased supplies for 300 children for Saturday’s distribution, and there may be some more by Saturday,” he said.

Bonnie Hasberry, the church’s public relations coordinator, choir president and assistant to the administrative assistant, said that supplies will be distributed by about 20 volunteers youth and adult volunteers

on Saturday, Aug. 7, at these times and locations:

– from 9-10:30 a.m. in front of the Community Center of GWC Homes;

– from 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m. at the entrance of Felix Heights; and

– from 1:30-3 p.m. on the lot to the right of Lawrence Street Groceries.

Included in the bags will be safety and back-to-school tips. The Sheriff’s Department and the Selma Police Department have provided materials for each bag, Goings said.

Bags will be in three categories, said C.C. Grayson, the pastor’s wife who is registrar at Concordia University – K-3, 4-7 and 8-12.

Included are such supplies as paper, pencils, folders, crayons, scissors, glue, highlighters and

markers that are common to all city schools.

Last Sunday the church presented bags to 50 of the children of its members.

In previous years, up to 100 children have received school supplies, Goings said, including non-members of the church.

“This year, we’re taking the supplies out to the neighborhood and hope to serve many more of the children of our community,” she said.

While school uniforms are not included, Goings did say that over the years Grace Tabernacle members have supported

the public school uniform drives.

In the past, the distribution of school supplies to member and non-member children was made on the church’s

Annual Community and Friends Day, the fourth Sunday of August, along with lunch for all comers following worship.

This year, the annual celebration will be held on Sunday, Aug. 22, as always but without the back-to-school-supplies distribution which will already have occurred this weekend and last.

The Sunday schedule at Grace Tabernacle church is Sunday school for all ages at 9:30 a.m. and worship at 11. On Aug. 22, the traditional annual luncheon will follow worship in the church’s fellowship hall.

Hasberry noted that the Grace Tabernacle Community Outreach Ministry School Supply Distribution program is but one of many outreach ministries of the congregation. Others include such things as the Summer REACH Program, monthly Food Share Program and Human Resource Ministry.

Grace Tabernacle’s representatives described their church’s worship service as “awesome.”

John Grayson has served as pastor of the church for the past nine years and full time in that position for the past five.

CUTLINE: Representatives of Grace Tabernacle Church of God in Christ display school supplies that will be given free to 300 Selma school-aged children on Saturday, Aug. 7, first come, first served, in three locations. Left to right: Khamari Gibbs, Bonnie Hasberry, Ghytana Goings, Pastor John Grayson and TyDorrian Gibbs.