On Sunday, December 11, 2011, the World Mission Society Church of God hosted its Winter 2011 Blood Drive in Ridgewood, NJ in partnership with Community Blood Services. The turnout of the drive came as no surprise to the Recruitment Director at Community Blood Services, Patrice Foresman, and to the returning staff who were involved with the Church of God’s previous drives. Among the 230 donating registrants, 180 units were collected. From this amazing drive, up to 540 lives could be saved.
Joseph McHale, a Community Blood Services volunteer, described the drive at the Church of God in Ridgewood as “huge” and “terrific.” Community Blood Services conventionally holds drives at high schools and corporations, normally obtaining around 100 or even just 50 units, respectively. McHale was shocked, impressed, and enthused by the magnificent turnout and the amount of new donors at the Church of God.
Volunteers completing applications to become blood donors
Kamil, now a veteran worker at the Church of God blood drives, mentioned that he likes coming here, taking notice of the calm and organized atmosphere of the members and participants despite the hundreds of blood contributors that Community Blood Services personnel had to register. The blood donating process takes roughly an hour, including: completing the application, getting tested for capability to donate, then finally donating itself. Undeterred by the lengthy process, which increased due to the limited amount of donating beds, Camille, a Community Blood Services worker, commented that “some people get very frustrated, but [Church of God donors] were not complaining about the wait.”
So what motivates Church of God members to continuously participate in these blood drives? It is their burning desire to serve others and follow in the footsteps of Heavenly Father Christ Ahnsahnghong and Heavenly Mother New Jerusalem. As Kamal Monges, first time donor and member of the Church of God in Philadelphia, expressed, “Father and Mother did it…with a lot more pain and a lot more suffering. This is a very small sacrifice. It was a pleasure to do this for those in need.” Even first time visitors to the Church enjoyed the warm and welcoming atmosphere as well as the beautiful deed of saving lives. It was Karen Roman’s first time at the Church of God and although she donated in the past, she appreciated the members’ attentiveness in helping her through the process to make her more comfortable and more at ease. When asked if she would come back to another Church of God Blood Drive, she responded, “Of course! And [I’d] bring some friends too!”