Monday, 16 December 2019 16:34

Place of Grace spreads Christmas cheer throughout the community

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Place of Grace Campus' Community Christmas event was moved indoors to the gym Saturday. See more photos at the bottom of this story. Place of Grace Campus' Community Christmas event was moved indoors to the gym Saturday. See more photos at the bottom of this story. Betty Gallo McIntyre - Richmond Observer

ROCKINGHAM — Hundreds came out to Place of Grace Saturday for its Community Christmas. 

The event was originally scheduled to take place outside in the field, but was relocated to the gym due to weather conditions.

There was no charge for the event, which was open to the entire community. It began at noon and included door prizes, numerous giveaways, live worship music, food and, of course, a visit from Santa. 

There were several tables filled with crafts for the children to make.

Hamlet Food Lion Manager Ron Davis, who was  was giving food boxes to all in attendance, was among the many representatives of organizations with outreach booths. The boxes contained canned vegetables, meat, bagged rice, and several boxed items. 

Richmond Community College also had a booth with  information on how to enroll and receive a high school diploma as well as attending college. 

Peer Support Services, based out of Moore County, was represented by Marianna Locklear, who is at Place of Grace from noon-4 p.m. Monday through Wednesday offering free services to anyone in need. The agency helps recovering addicts become self-sufficient. 

Allison Melvin with NC Works also had a booth set up with information on helping those in need find employment. 

Senior Associate Pastor Gerald Goins said the church’s goal of collecting 1,000 shoeboxes for children had been exceeded. The shoeboxes were full of all sorts of gifts for the children. The first shoebox giveaway was held Sunday at the Place of Grace Campus and will continue at 9 and 11 a.m. Dec. 22. Children must be present to receive the gifts. The community is encouraged to come out and partake in these loaded Christmas shoeboxes that will be available on a first-come-first-serve basis while supplies last.

Chuck and Rita Thames offered information on the Rescue Mission at Place of Grace. They have been helping with this mission for more than six years. 

“It’s a great place for a second chance at life,” said Chuck Thames. 

The mission is currently open to house 22 men and 17 women; however the men’s rooms are at capacity. Plans are in place for future growth. 

Resident and volunteer Jami Clark has been with Place of Grace for two months. 

“It has helped me in every aspect of my life,” she said. “I could have never done this by myself. It is all God; Jesus gives us all we need to help one another. 

“The classes and bible study help us all to overcome obstacles in life,” Clark continued. “I’m glad God brought me here. I should have been dead eight times this year from overdoses, but God had other plans for me. They help here with clothes, shelter, and another chance at life. I highly recommend anyone needing help not to hesitate to come out for help.”

Clark also mentioned how Celebrate Recovery has been a big help in her life. 

Senior Pastor Gary Richardson said it was good to see all the agencies, churches, Food Lion, and others coming out to help. 

“Putting people who need help with the people who can offer that help is the goal in helping our community,” he said. “I also want to thank Santa Clause for stopping by.”

For more information on Place of Grace, call 910-817-7165 or visit


Last modified on Monday, 16 December 2019 19:55