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Faith and friendship at Girls Night Out

by: PHOTO BY JUDY EMBANKS - Phyllis Moore, standing, helps organize the monthly Girls' Night Out gatherings.By Teresa Jackson

Guest writer

About six years ago, Phyllis Moore was invited to Girls' Night Out. She's been spending the third Tuesday of the month with the "girls" ever since.

"I just have a real heart for the women in Jefferson County," she said. "There's just not a lot to do here."

She said the group is for women in the county who become lonely because there aren't very many places to meet other people.

Of the 40 women who were at the last meeting, Moore said she probably knew five before Girls' Night Out.

Getting to know each other is one of the purposes of the meetings, which are part of the larger Stonecroft Ministries.

The nondenominational organization started in 1938 as The Christian Women's Business Council, and its goal then was sharing the story of Jesus with businesswomen. The group's work has expanded to include all women. It has a special emphasis on women in the military in some areas.

Moore remembers when Stonecroft had a group in the 1970s. They met at lunch, but the group fizzled due to lack of leadership.

Today, Girls' Night Out is beginning its eighth year in Madras, and with 40 women from middle school age to 90 years old attending regularly, it shows no signs of slowing down.

Lois Pies, this year's chairwoman, is a newer member, having been coming for about a year.

"I had some friends that were involved, and they invited me. I had a good time," she said.

The meetings, which are held the third Tuesday of the month, at 6 p.m., in the Fireside Room at the First Baptist Church, in Madras, begin with a catered dinner by a local restaurant, which costs $10.

The women choose an inspirational speaker from a list provided by Stonecroft Ministries.

"We have a list of speakers who are qualified, who have a story to tell," Pies said. They share from their life experience.

They "encourage you in your spiritual walk," Moore said.

They also have a special feature, usually from Jefferson County. The topics can be on anything of interest to the women in the group. They've heard from ballet dancers, gardeners, music studio owners, police officers, quilters, and more. They occasionally have concerts, too.

"You never know what people are interested in or things they want to do with their family," Pies said. All the women have input, and they work together to make the organization run.

"Any woman, any age group, is welcome," Moore said. "It's a very nonthreatening social time."

For more information on the local group, contact Pies at (541) 977-5372.

To learn more about Stonecroft Ministries, go to www.stonecroftministries.org.



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