By Quinn Lavespere, Message Staff Writer
LAFAYETTE – It’s a ministry with a catchy name that serves to accomplish exactly what that ministry’s name represents.[img_assist|nid=7801|title=Servnlove in action|desc=Servenlove volunteer Steven Feehan and Ministry Evangelism Strategist Jeff Cook (right) assists with an outreach to inner city and homeless people on Nov. 19 in Lafayette.|link=none|align=left|width=640|height=471]
The Evangeline Baptist Association’s Servnlove ministry meets community needs in Lafayette while feeding the homeless in the city and lifting up souls in need of God’s love.
“This is a great tool to reach out to people and embrace them with the love God wants us to show,” Missions/evangelism Strategist Lonnie Cleveland said. “Along with our block party trailer, it really is great for spreading the Gospel.”
Servnlove was begun mainly by Jeff Cook, Evangeline Association’s regional strategist for the LBC, with help from others.
“When Servnlove was first created, Jeff and the others put this ministry together with a multi-housing purpose,” Cleveland said. “It was meeting needs in the community, such as feeding the homeless breakfast on Saturday. We met every Monday in one location, but now we have to find a different one, as the original one was part of the Catholic Charities complex, so we’re having to find another place to meet at weekly. Servnlove is sponsored by the association here, and it has an orphanage ministry in India. We sponsor a mission over there and meet some needs here, like at multi- housing apartments here. We have about 20 people staffed at Servnlove, and it’s all volunteer work. We also get food help from certain places and hope to get more churches involved with Servnlove.”
Servnlove is additionally seeking property for a women’s transitional house, according to the missions/evangelism strategist.
“There’s a church in our area that is relocating, and we’re trying to use that facility or find another where we could meet some of the needs in the community,” Cleveland said. “In addition to helping the homeless and needy, the women’s ministry in question also does clothes, shoes, and that type of stuff.
“We have a nurse practitioner who’s willing to help with some minor medical needs as well as directing people to areas they can get help. We also have a lady from Shreveport who has a very effective street ministry who’s coming to visit with us. Basically, it’s a compassion ministry, meeting needs.”
The missions/evangelism strategist said Servnlove has been blessed by God through all the things the ministry has been involved with.
“Whether it’s the apartment ministry, the clothing distribution, or serving breakfast on Saturday, God has blessed Servnlove,” Cleveland said. “Jesus met people in physical need and met them spiritually as well. This ministry has opened the door for some real spiritual interests. It’s not just people using us, but they also seem to care and appreciate what we’re doing.”
Servnlove will continue to search for another location for the future and grow the ministry where it covers several areas in need, the missions/evangelism strategist said.
“We’ll do that and continue to look to establish the women’s transitional house,” Cleveland said. “We’ll use our block party trailer to go into multi-housing areas and meet needs. We hope to grow and are waiting f