Annual Thanksgiving Service: America is resilient

America and the church’s resolve was honored Thursday at the annual Culpeper Christian Community Thanksgiving Worship Service.

Guest speaker, Dr. Doug Springer, author, founder and president of the national and global disaster relief organization “Somebody Cares America/International, talked about how America and the church has come together to face adversity. Hurricanes Harvey and Irma, mass shootings and other strife have pulled our country together and restored faith instead of shattering it.

“We have something far more in common than what divides us,” Stringer said.

Stringer, who is from Houston, pointed to the relief efforts of Hurricane Harvey and how the church community helped first responders during the crisis.

“Everywhere you went the church was there, doing what Christians are supposed to do, being Christ like,” Stringer said. “It’s amazing to see our churches come together and help our first responders and our first responders using the church. Everyone coming together. People need to know there are people out there rescuing lives and saving souls.”

Stringer said our nation’s faith is strong, no matter the situation.

“Revival comes sometimes by circumstance and sometimes by choice,” Stringer said. “I pray that it comes more by choice but I pray in difficult times you’ll see there’s still character left in the church of America.”

The Salvation Army provided the testimony of thankfulness this year, with Lt. Jared Martin sharing his experiences in serving in Georgia during Hurricane Irma.

He shared a story of an elderly couple who lost everything, except for their compassion for others. Their home was flooded and filled with mold, but they still helped their neighbors and were overjoyed when the Salvation Army came to feed the neighborhood.

“‘There are so many people that need you,’ they said,” Martin said. “They were joyous the Salvation Army comforted them in their time of need. They said ‘this is why people donate to the Salvation Army.’”

Earlier in the day, the Salvation Army started its Red Kettle campaign for the Christmas season, and Martin encouraged all to give.

“Every time you pass that Red Kettle, you hold the hopes of people like this in your hands,” Martin said.

First responders, elected officials and law enforcement were honored for their efforts.

“Culpeper County Ministerial Association puts this Thanksgiving service together for you,” Nancy Sharman said. “For what you mean to us, and what a privilege it is to serve you. Thank you for being part of our community.”

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Jeff Say is the editor for the Culpeper Times. He can be reached at