It started with gratitude: A simple idea to acknowledge and appreciate the dedication of healthcare workers who serve all of us. Faith Rivera, a young adult at Younger Generation Church (YG) in Arlington, Texas, pitched the idea of offering Valentine’s appreciation gifts to all the frontliners at Texas Health Mansfield.*
“I wanted to start this project to thank the healthcare workers for all they do day in and day out,” shared Rivera.
With the help from students at Burton Adventist Academy, YG collected personal, heartfelt notes and letters from students thanking frontline workers for all they continue to do to keep others safe and healthy. The notes were added to a collection of goodies including warm drinks, sweets, and Krispy Kreme donuts in store for the hospital employees.
“Right now is a hard time for a lot of people, and healthcare workers are always putting others’ needs and health above their own,” reflected Faith, “I felt this was a great opportunity for our church to show our appreciation.”
The February snow and ice storms only temporarily postponed YG’s efforts, who arrived the following week at Texas Health Mansfield and went from floor to floor, unit to unit, sharing their gratitude.
“These past few months have been challenging for us with COVID-19, the winter storm, and opening a new hospital,” admitted Kimberly Pieper, executive assistant to the president of Texas Health Mansfield. “Having YG come by and bring goodies brought a smile to our faces. We appreciate their support and their kindness.”
The young adult team from YG was greeted with warm smiles from ecstatic workers who were grateful to receive the gifts. Many joyful smiles and “thank-yous” were shared as the group toured the hospital and shared some TLC with the healthcare employees.
“It was awesome to have YG come by and visit us and our weekend team members during these challenging times,” expressed Carine Moura, manager of strategy and marketing for Texas Health Mansfield. “We are thankful for their kindness and support!”
“It was so beautiful to serve a community of people who deserve it so much,” said Iryna Brochu, a young adult photographer with YG, “I was honored to be there to capture it!”
A simple idea of gratitude came to life as a group of young adults at YG acted upon it, expressing their love. It is beautiful to see how a community pulls together to cheer each other on and lift each other up, through even the most challenging of seasons.
— Kayla Goodman, a junior religion major at Southwestern Adventist University, is pastoral intern for Young Generation Church, a vibrant young adult ministry of the Arlington Seventh-day Adventist Church in Texas.
* Texas Health Mansfield is a joint venture of Texas Health and AdventHealth.