GREENVILLE — When police officers take the oath to protect and serve, they demonstrate an extraordinary personal willingness to put others before self. Whether on or off duty, those in local law enforcement today find themselves doing far more than patrolling neighborhoods, checking speed limits, and stopping impaired drivers.
Here, in Greenville, St. Paul’s Lutheran Church has come together to “Back the Blue,” showing support and appreciation for every officer within the Greenville City Police department.
Last week, members of St. Paul’s Social Ministry Committee honored the Greenville City Police Department with letters of appreciation along with five $20 gift cards (for each officer) to local Greenville businesses, including Maid-rite, Merchant House, A & B Coffee, Beanz Bakery, and the Dairy Barn.
“The church does not pay taxes, but we still receive city services…The Social Ministry Committee suggested that we should contribute in another way, and decided to honor the Greenville City Police Dept. this year,” said Mike Meckes, St. Paul’s Lutheran Church council member. “This is our way of saying we believe the Greenville Police Department is doing a great job and we appreciate your dedication to the job of protecting the community. We wanted you to know that we thank you for what your do. We pray for you each week and every Sunday. We are very appreciative of the fact that you show up when we need you!”
Because of the negative press and publicity that law enforcement has received over the past year, the members of St. Paul’s Lutheran wanted to express their support and thanks of those in blue who are dedicated to serving the public, and plan to honor other municipal service departments within the city in successive years.
Chief Eric Roberts warmly greeted members of the church, and thanked Pastor Alan Knoke, Mike Meckes, and members of St. Paul’s Social Ministry Committee, for taking the time to personally thank each of the 32 officers in his department.
“It means so much – the support of the community. We will never take this for granted,” said Roberts. “Many people have reached out and shown support, and that means more to us than you realize. St. Paul’s generosity just really means a lot to us!”
Each year, St. Paul’s Lutheran Church, located at 131 E. Fourth Street, sets aside money from each offering that is used to fulfill the church’s mission from God — to support the community and provide for the less fortunate. In addition to this project, the church’s Social Ministry Committee also supports the VFW to aid veterans, and are in the process of developing a program with the Greenville City Schools to help students.
Interested in learning more? St. Paul’s Lutheran Church service times are Sunday mornings, 8 a.m. and 10:30 a.m., with children’s and adult ministries, beginning at 9:15 a.m. Visit St. Paul’s Lutheran on Facebook or at www.stpaulgreenville.360unite.com. Questions? Call the church at 937- 548-5770 or email at: [email protected]