Servant Leaders

#meetourservantleaders

Each week we highlight servant leaders in our church and community. There are so many individuals, couples, and families doing incredible work that we often don't hear about. So we want you to start to "meet them", see how God is using them, and get excited for the ministry work taking place at Coral Ridge and in our city. We are blessed and humbled by their hearts and service. If you want to get involved in any of the ministries we highlight, email us and we'll get you plugged in!

Bradley Arnold (1)

Meet Tommy and Joanie DeRosalia:
Benevolence Ministry Servant Leaders

Tommy and Joanie run the benevolence ministry at Coral Ridge for the unsheltered in Broward County. They don't just feed the hungry - they develop the human. On Saturdays, they serve breakfast and provide clothing for all who come. They make a point to hug each individual who walks through the door - for as they say, "it might be first and only person they've physically touched and had human contact with all week." Saturdays are for development, too: bus pass applications, job and housing searches/applications, prayer, and self-sufficiency surveys. They also celebrate birthdays, complete with cupcakes, candles, and singing. All guests are invited to worship on Sunday, encouraged to attend, and welcomed when they arrive. Many of the guests just want to talk - they just want to be heard. Joanie and Tommy will drive by a bus stop and see 4 unsheltered--they'll say "we'll know 3 of them - their names, their stories - and notice that other one is new. We'll make a point to get him to the church on Saturday and meet him." They're not just unnamed and unknown - now people know their names, their stories, and their birthdays. This is an incredible couple, and we are so blessed and encouraged by their hearts and love for the hurting in our community. #meetourservantleaders

final Meet John Hicks

Meet John Hicks:
Avondale Servant Leader

I thought God wanted me to become a missionary. I always thought missions was just overseas, but I came to realize there was missional work needed in our local communities. So I plugged into what Coral Ridge was already doing in Avondale. God has connected me to 40 kids (20+ families) and we have 4 churches involved there – Coral Ridge, Calvary Chapel Ft. Lauderdale, First Baptist Pompano, and Zoe Life Church. We found out that there was a city park at the end of the community, but it wasn’t being used. Families said it wasn’t safe. Drugs were being sold out of the bathrooms everyday. There were never kids playing there. So we decided to create a sports play ministry for the kids on Saturdays. We wanted that park to be safe for the kids – it would at least be a safe place for them on Saturday mornings. The community has now taken the park back – the kids are there every day. The drug selling has disappeared – it’s no longer quiet and safe for drugs. It’s loud and safe for kids. We're there every Saturday from 10am-12:30pm playing sports and doing arts and crafts with the kids. We bring snacks and water, and sometimes we grill out. An 8 year old girl ran up to me once on a Saturday and asked, “Is this the soccer church?” I said “Yes, darling, you’re in the right place.” Coral Ridge has sponsored 40 kids a year into the soccer and basketball programs at First Baptist. On Sundays, I bring 10 kids to church in the church van and we go out for lunch after. I’ve gone to their graduations, their baptisms... We used to think we needed to have a big event in the community to make a difference. But God has shown me that it's about being steadily and faithfully involved in the community that makes the difference – a continual faithful presence in their lives. That’s what’s made the difference, that’s what has connected us to their families. They trust us. At first, the boys who come think they have to be street tough – within 2 weeks they’re running around playing just like kids. That’s all it takes. On Saturdays they don't have to be tough - they can just play. #meetourservantleaders

Meet Kenny and Michele

Meet Kenny and Michele Valentine:
Church and Communion Servant Leaders

Kenny and Michele have been part of our Coral Ridge family for 2 1/2 years (although it’s hard to imagine a time without them). They have 3 children and 2 dogs. From the moment they started coming to Coral Ridge, they have been eager to get plugged in and serve. Their smiles and personalities are infectious. Kenny serves as a deacon, pitching in with all that entails to serve the church body. Additionally, he faithfully prepares communion each month for our church family. He gets to church early on Communion Sundays to get all the elements ready for the Lord’s Supper. Michele has had MS for 15 years and can’t stand for long periods of time. She had gotten into baking bread recently — it was something she could handle physically and loved to do and share. Wanting to do more to serve in the church, she was praying to God, asking how she could serve while so limited physically. And then it hit her: she could make the communion challah. It takes her 2-3 hours to make the bread each month. Now as a couple, they play a huge role in communion each month: Michele makes the challah, and Kenny sets up the elements and helps usher our congregation out row by row to receive communion. We love the Valentines so much. They have such servant hearts, gracious spirits, and contagious smiles. They bless us more than they know. #meetourservantleaders