Sharing Smiles: Evangelism is alive and well at St. John’s Cathedral.
Pictured left to right: Jessica Jones (dental assistant) and Dr. Smita Borole, DDS, with Georgiana Vines and Pattie Thiele
In talking with Pattie Thiele of the various ministries of St. John’s Friends, she mentioned the many people who have empathy and compassion and a desire to contribute to the well-being of others. She once heard it said, “You may be the only Bible that some people ever read.” Pattie considers this sort of evangelism a good barometer, a mirror, to reveal how our actions convey our beliefs.
A few times a year St. John’s Friends host a gathering for the residents of the YWCA. This transitional housing program supports everyone from victims of domestic violence to those in recovery from substance abuse. Others simply need the opportunity to find their financial footing after long-term unemployment. Consequently, oral health is not a priority…it’s more of a luxury.
Last fall parishioner and member of St. John’s Friends, Susan Hutsell called attention to this need and a new ministry was born. Pattie Thiele sought dentists to volunteer their services for residents of the YWCA through the dental center at the Volunteer Ministry Center. Other dentists are needed, but the first Saturday of each month Dr. Smita Borole and members of her staff continue to volunteer their services to the residents of the Y, providing fillings, root canals, and more…all rendered free of charge. Pattie Thiele assists in the clinic, mostly as a facilitator and to chart the patients, but also as a hygienist doing dental cleanings when necessary. Karen Eberle and Georgiana Vines generously donate their time as well, greeting patients and handling the paper work. The program continues to thrive and even full and partial dentures will be made available soon through significant price breaks from suppliers.
One doesn’t need to be a professional in a given field in order to serve others. The men and women involved in these opportunities invite you to participate where you can. For information on the YWCA and the many ways YOU can serve, please contact coordinator, Karen Eberle, firstname.lastname@example.org or 865-604-7159.