Northside’s Prayer Tree ministry has provided a vital service to members since the mid-1990s. Read below to learn how it has evolved over the years and to find out about recent changes.
Ginger Mauck and Billie Swan have been involved in this ministry from the beginning. Both consider it a calling, but felt it was time to give the reins to someone younger. Annette Brooks has now taken on this big job.
If you’re one of the 315 Prayer Tree subscribers, you’ve surely noticed the emails are now being sent via Realm. We made this change to fix a problem where some services thought our emails were spam and were blocking them.
The Prayer Tree got its start almost 30 years ago when a women’s class started sharing prayer requests via phone calls. As other members heard about their informal prayer circle, they asked to be included, and the numbers of those getting the calls grew.
Ginger had heard about prayer trees organized with multiple “prayer captains,” as she called them, each responsible for calling several members, so she implemented this way of organizing our Prayer Tree. This new system helped, but it was not without its challenges.
“You know that game called Gossip? The old phone call Prayer Tree was kind of like that,” Ginger told me. “By the time a prayer request was passed from person to person to person by phone, it often had changed a little (or a lot) from the original request. So, when email became popular, Ginger recruited helpers, including Billie, to email prayer requests, ensuring the original wording of each request stayed intact. Those who hadn’t yet discovered the “joys” of email continued to get prayer requests by phone.
Billie was one of the prayer captains, and she volunteered to serve as the primary sender of prayer request emails if Ginger would continue to manage the ministry and serve as her backup. That arrangement continued until just recently, when both “retired” and Annette agreed to handle the ministry. Ginger will serve as Annette’s backup, at least for a while.
Ginger and Billie, THANK YOU for your decades of tireless work in helping Northside members know what they need to pray about.
And thank you, Annette, for stepping into their big shoes.