The genius of God’s design for Christ’s church is having many differently gifted members working together in His service. That’s where the beauty of His Body is best seen. And that’s where we’re experiencing new growth in our church family’s leadership team. Last month’s newsletter briefly mentioned the addition of two new staff members in our Sanctuary family, Ginger Kent and Carmel Grillo, but I want to give you a little more on their background so you can join me in giving thanks for what they bring to our ministry.
Ginger Kent is certainly a familiar face on our worship team, but with the departure of two of our regular worship leaders, we felt this was a good time to ask Ginger to join our part time staff team to take a more active role in coordinating and leading our worship ministries. Graciously, Ginger agreed, and she has brought fresh energy and a wealth of experience to help us together exalt the name of our great God in worship.
Ginger grew up in a home well acquainted with church ministry. Her father was a pastor and her mother a choir director. And it was through song that Ginger very early on understood the gospel and responded in faith to the Lord. When later, as a teenager, the world beckoned with its deceptive lure, Ginger testifies that it was the hymns and songs of our faith that kept her close to Christ. Through those years, too, the church choir and orchestra became great outlets for her passion for music. Ginger became skilled in piano, violin and flute, in addition to her growing vocal talent. So, it’s always been in the musical ministries of the church where Ginger has felt most at home.
And then there’s that guy in Ginger’s life, Doctor Richard Kent. Ginger met Dick in dental school and they married in 1979. Dick became a dentist and Ginger a dental hygienist. Then, after 20 years of caring for people’s teeth, Ginger transitioned to a career with Mary Kay Cosmetics, a job that enabled her the flexibility to care for their two growing sons, Trevin and Royen. Now, given the opportunity to pull everybody together as a family, Dick and Ginger still enjoy a bike ride or even a vacation opportunity to get away to ski in the snow.
When asked about her vision for ministry, Ginger reflected on the ministry of the Old Testament Kohathites. Set apart by God to lead His people in worship, these Levites gave great attention to preparing the place and service through which God’s people could bring their praises to God. So, Ginger’s heart is to work with our worship teams, developing their gifts, and sharpening and growing them so that as modern day “Kohathites” they might lead us to excellence in our expressions of adoration and praise. What a worthy calling!
Welcome, Ginger, we’re delighted to have more of your skilled influence on our leadership team!
And it’s not just our worship area that is getting fresh attention, but our children’s ministries are also under new direction with the addition of Carmel Grillo to our team. This month Carmel received the leadership baton from Julie Gowdy who has been giving us invaluable help through this time of transition since the Combs’ call to Lighthouse Baptist. In fact, Julie will continue to help Carmel with preparation for our Vacation Bible School, as it is our biggest single children’s event of the year, and it is very soon upon us! Thank you, Julie! We’re blessed!
Carmel grew up in South Africa (hence the classy accent), the middle child of three who were spread over 14 years. Her family was God fearing and involved in the Moravian Church. As Carmel now reflects on her early years, she recalls delighting in God’s great love, yet not really understanding just how personal God’s care and salvation for her really were. But at age 13 a friend invited Carmel to a youth group where she heard the gospel clearly, and there she opened her heart to the Lord.
Now, nearly 30 years later, Carmel has a passion to pass along that same gospel confidence to children and their families through our ministry as well.
Carmel went on to study Law in South Africa but took some time away to come to the States for a job as an au pair. What she hadn’t anticipated was crossing paths at her church in Connecticut with a handsome Italian guy who was immediately smitten with her. The attraction was mutual, God was leading in their relationship, and in February of 2000 Anthony and Carmel were married. Within a few years the Lord began adding to their household and today their family includes four girls between the ages of 2 and 13, Josephine, Sophia, Alexandra, and Gabriella.
When asked about her vision for our children’s ministry, Carmel draws on a wealth of experience ministering to kids both in South Africa and here in the States. She loves the receptivity of a child’s heart and wants to partner with parents in helping children understand the gospel and how to grow in their faith through God’s Word. Carmel, too, sees music ministry as a powerful tool in encouraging children to know and follow the Lord. Blessed by the great cadre of volunteer leaders who are faithfully serving here, Carmel looks forward to serving with our SBCCV leadership team.
Welcome, Carmel, we’re glad you are here!
Now you can see why it’s so good to have these servant-hearted ladies ministering on our team. We’re blessed! Let’s look expectantly to see how God will use us together to champion His mission of grace and truth across our peninsula community. What a great God we serve!