Christian group brings church to the elderly
by Sharon Hall | June 2, 2017 3:59 am
Last Updated: June 1, 2017 at 5:00 pm
Church on Wheels is a ministry that has been bringing Christianity to nursing home residents in Clarendon County for more than a decade. Due to age and compromised mobility, the elderly are often unable to attend church, so the church has been coming to them.
Lillian Wright has served in nursing homes with her mobile ministry since 2005. With intentions of quenching the thirst of spiritual needs in the elderly, Wright felt that there was a need to serve in the facilities.
“God placed me here in the Windsor Manor Nursing Facility to bring the word of God to residents,” she said. “We also serve in several other nursing homes in the community.”
Wright started Church on Wheels 12 years ago after being invited to visit Windsor Manor.
“I started the ministry by myself on Aug. 23, 2005, when a friend invited me to visit Windsor Manor Nursing Facility,” said Wright. “We served as a ministry on that visit and have been going back ever since. The residents loved it so much that I was invited back to do ministry every Tuesday.”
“Rev. Wright,” as the residents know her, said that she “brings forth the word” by preaching and singing at the home. She also provides devotional services for residents.
“The name came to me a few years after I started Church on Wheels,” she said. “I was preaching and the spirit came to me and told me that I am a church on wheels. Since then, the ministry has outgrown me. You don’t see my name too much anymore; you see the name Church on Wheels.”
Wright herself is from Mt. Zero Missionary Baptist Church, but notes that all those involved in her ministry come from different churches.
“During the times we conducted meetings, we found that other churches began to volunteer and joined in with our visits,” she said. “These visitors from other churches became involved with our mobile ministry, and now we have visitors all the time.”
Wright said the residents look forward to their services each week, and that if her ministry doesn’t show up on the odd Tuesday, they are missed.
“Residents will ask about us if for some odd reason we are unable to show up as scheduled,” said Wright. “I have noticed since we have been joining together as a non-denominational entity, that it’s not about what church you belong to. It is only about God serving his people and joining together to serve him as a team.”
Church on Wheels is a non-denominational group because people who join them in worship are of a diverse Christian faith, Wright said. They also offer communion to residents at the beginning of each month.
“We are non-denominational because we have different faiths that come to worship with us, and when we are together, we are of one faith and one baptism,” Wright said. “During the holiday season, we try to make a fuss over the residents and we bring gifts to pass out. They love that. They also love to testify and worship, which adds fuel to our cause.”