This past Saturday, a bunch of Baptists took to the streets. They called it Acts 1:8, One Day Mission Trip. Acts 1:8, often quoted, says: “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” So, over 2,000 Baptists from hundreds of churches all over the state came to North Pulaski County. Not exactly the ends of the earth, but there was work to be done.
The volunteers included some from First Baptist Church of Maumelle. The purpose of the event was to literally reach out to the community. Collectively, the volunteers were offering some 150 services to those who wanted them. That included fixing up homes, rebuilding a front porch, painting houses, yard services, medical services and feeding the hungry.
According to a Southern Baptist Convention spokesperson, the mission was to feed 11,000 people in one day. First Baptist Church of Maumelle sponsored a block party just across the street from the church at the Millwood Apartments, Driving by, I saw a good size group enjoying a cookout and a bouncy house for kids. They also had children’s activities at the Gables Apartments. Another cool idea was a group visiting the local Laundromat armed with $200 worth of quarters providing free laundry services.
The volunteers also took the time to visit the nursing homes in the area, playing games, visiting, providing music and leading Bible studies with the residents.
This is where the rubber meets the road. The old cliché, “We’ll keep you in our thoughts and prayers,” is all well and good, but it those who go to the “ends of the earth” will make a difference and help heal the broken.
It is the way we will decrease violence and bring us together, no matter what your religion or church. Because at the end of the day, you are unlikely to cause harm to your neighbor or one who has helped you and the community. Peace, out.
This is the 10th year of the one-day mission trip. The trip targets a different area of Arkansas every year.
Council meeting takes care of business
It was a fairly uneventful Maumelle City Council meeting on October 2. There were about 15 people in attendance in addition to the Council members.
Mayor Mike Watson started the meeting by presenting a plaque from the Arkansas Municipal League to State Rep. Doug House for his distinguished service.
The Council also received a report from an Environmental Protection Agency representative and Maumelle Director of Planning and Zoning Jim Narey on the White Oak Bayou Wetland Program Grant. More on this next week.
A citizen, Adam Davies, appeared before the Council to ask the City to consider some way that boat owners can work on their boats (and trailers) at their homes without being cited by the Code En-forcement folks (the sticker men). None of the Council Members seemed to be aware of the specifics of the ordinance, which prohibits a boat owner from keeping a boat in his driveway past the line of the front of the house. This has been an ongoing issue since I moved to Maumelle over 15 years ago and there doesn’t seem to be an easy way to rectify it.
Obviously, we don’t want boats and trailers parked indefinitely in driveways, but there should be a way to allow a temporary permit of perhaps a day or two so owners can fiddle around with their boats. Maybe a color-coded permit sticker? I have a copy of the ordinance and will attempt to understand the do’s and don’ts by next week. Send me your thoughts if you’ve dealt with this issue.
One citizen complained that parking at the new Senior Center can be a problem and the mayor point-ed out that the Center has doubled in membership to 1,400 and there are times when the lot is full. He mentioned that additional parking might have to be considered.
Update on Officer Cruse: Officer Chris Cruse has moved home and is continuing rehab. He had been living in a third-floor apartment and the Maumelle Police are moving him to a ground-level apartment. Chief Sam Williams reported that Cruse is in good spirits and ready to get back to work.
Arnold makes it official
We told you over a month ago that JaNan Davis Arnold was going to run for district judge. Last week she made it official and she is indeed in the race facing three other candidates in what I predict will be a tough race and possibly an expensive one.
Normally, judicial races remain civil without overtly negative messages. But that doesn’t mean an out-side group can’t run negative messages about a particular candidate. Politicos call it “dark money.” Dark money made the difference a few years ago in an Arkansas Supreme Court race and can have a huge impact on a race that doesn’t have much money to start with.
Will there be more than one mayoral candidate?
Someone besides Mayor Mike Watson is considering running for mayor of Maumelle, but they aren’t sure at this point. And Mayor Watson says he isn’t sure if he’s running. Hopefully, someone will be sure by the filing deadline.
See you on the Boulevard.
Neal Moore is a public relations and advertising consultant and freelance writer. If you have a commu-nity concern, Maumelle news tip or if you’re just irritated about something, contact him at email@example.com. Follow him on Facebook, Linkedin or Twitter, @kneelmore.