The congregation and newly appointed pastor of Lewis Temple CME Church, Rev. David Hartfield-Dyels pooled their resources to bless a fellow member with transportation.
The fortunate member, Tiara Martin, has served as the church pianist for nearly two years. For Martin, who is a single mother, commuting back and forth from Shreveport to Grambling without reliable transportation was becoming more problematic.
Hartfield-Dyels said he has an affinity for single mothers and their children because he is the child of a single mother. He challenged his members to give above and beyond tithes and offerings in an effort to purchase a car for Martin.
“The first Sunday in September we took up a special offering, and I made the plea…I didn’t tell them who, I just told them that there was a single mother in the church who needs our help with a car,” said Dyels.
He requested a specific amount, however, “we raised almost a little over half of what I asked for.” With the help of a used car salesman and some faith, Hartfield-Dyels was able to present Martin with a small gift box.
Martin could have only hoped for monetary assistance to be used toward the purchasing of a vehicle, but much to her surprise inside the box were not only keys to her new car, but an insurance card as well; giving a true meaning to the old adage, big things come in small packages.
The car giveaway will not necessarily be routine for Lewis Temple CME church, but Hartfield-Dyels explained that, “it will happen enough so that we can help people.”
Hartfield-Dyels certainly has innovative, fresh ideas for not only Grambling, but also Lincoln Parish as a whole, “truly we’re not focusing just on Grambling.”
The first of upcoming events is the “HE Brews CafÃ©” in the fellowship hall where the church will serve coffee and other beverages, free of charge set, to open Oct. 7.
The Holy hiphop worship service featuring Christian rap artists Transparent, Young Fiyah and Reign to be held later in the fall.
The youth and young adult ministry under the moniker S.W.A.G.G. (Students Worshipping And Glorifying God) is being built up as well.
Hartfield-Dyels encourages students to register to vote. Students needing transportation on election day or voting registration can come to Lewis Temple CME.
Next year marks the 135th Anniversary of Lewis Temple CME Church, which has served as a pillar in the community as well as the spiritual home to many students, faculty and administrators over the years.
To celebrate, the church intends to give away 135 of a particular object each month. “One month will be basketball, another will be footballs, and bicycles for another,” said Dyles. Lewis Temple CME has plenty in store for the community.