An Introduction from Debbie Graves

About Debbie

I’m the women’s ministry director here at Catalina Foothills Church, and this is my, um, June will be the beginning of my 12th year on staff. And I volunteer for about three years before that. So I’ve been here for a while and I think one of the reasons I’ve been here so long is because I love this church so much and I love the Lord and I, um, We really love the relationships that we’ve built in women’s ministry, um, especially our volunteers and leadership team.

And, um, we’ve been really blessed to have incredible ladies that just give and give of themselves. And together we’ve just made up this great team and accomplished some incredible things over the years. And, and so yeah, I, I think that we all love serving the Lord and, um, and we, and we just build this fellowship with one another.

So it’s been, it’s been quite an experience and I’m honored and humbled that I’m still here. Mm-hmm. , and that the Lord, you know, keeps me here. And so that’s, that’s been a blessing. Yeah. And I, and I could see that in your smile. Yeah. Yeah. You know, it’s been, yeah. And I love, um, the staff, you know, there’s been a lot of changes over the years.

That’s been hard because I tend to, Attached quite a bit. But, um, we’ve got, we’ve got a great team now and I’m very excited about the, you know, the stones being here and our different pastors. Um, the Penns, the Turners, the, you know, so it’s a, it’s a nice team. It is, yeah. And, and the staff here is, you just couldn’t find nicer people.

About Women’s Ministry Leaders

You know, I’ll, I’ll say, I’ll think of like Mary Beth with the Loving Mom’s class. Um, this, this her eighth year of doing the Loving Mom’s class.

So we worked together for eight years and we have just a love and respect forno each other and admiration for what she does. She’s kind of a mentor for me and she mentors to the tightest gals around her. And, um, so. Friendships and relationships that are, you know, you, they become like your sisters truly.

Whereas hey, sisters, in Christ, they become like your sisters, your family. And so, and there’s a lot of other ones. FA Act does all of our, um, a lot of our admin and she just a personal friend, um, and has grown to be part of our family. She, you know, is really, um, wonderful with my mom, but also with myself.

And so, Those kind of relationships, you know, are pretty special. So that’s what I mean by that. And. You know, I have, uh, about 11 women on our leadership team and they range from, you know, maybe early thirties to our sweet Anna Baker who’s 95 years old, and she’s been there as long as I have and she does all her correspondence.

So, you know, we get a lot of different ages and a lot of people that we get the, um, share life together Yeah. And share ministry together. Right. It’s pretty special. Yeah. And that, that has. that makes a big difference in how you lead and how you serve the women that you’re caring for, right? Yeah, I think, um, I’m a servant leader probably almost too much, but I, I won’t ask anyone to do anything that I won’t try to do myself except, you know, some of the tech stuff is certainly not my thing.

which you will learn , but, um, but I’ll try anything, but, um, . Um, anyhow. Yeah. Yeah. So I try to be a servant leader and, um, surround myself by people who, you know, love to serve also. Yeah, absolutely. That helps you. Uh, I’ve noticed for myself when I’m in fellowship with brothers in Christ who have the same, uh, disposition.

Yeah. Uh, it encourages and it, it, it gives me. the drive to push myself beyond what I normally would Yeah. Would strive for. Yeah. You, you’ve get the best out of people if you love them. Well, I think absolutely. I wish I could do that better at home sometimes. But yeah. something tells me you do that very well.

No , but, um, So, yeah. And I, I’ve been hearing that. Um, so as I said, I’m new, I’m, I’m learning the ropes. Yeah. And I’m, I’m learning about the events and how we share them, things like that. And I’ve been hearing about, um, loving Moms. Yeah. And it sounded to me like it started, I, I don’t know when, but some time ago.

And it’s just been sort of branching out and growing. Yeah. Which is exciting. It, um, started a MOPS group here. My, I started in June and that August we launched a MOPS group at this church for the first time. And MOPS is an international moms of preschoolers is what it stands for. Okay. And, um, they had their own model and it didn’t, we did it for about three years, but their model didn’t really work with our.

Our church. But, and also there were some things that we weren’t really thrilled with, that we really would like to have more control over ourselves. And so, um, we ended that program. But the Lord, being the Lord, he had Mary Beth, um, come, you know, I actually approached Mary Beth that, um, She was, she was given permission to take over a program or to do a program that they were doing here in town for 25 years before that from a gal named Barb Wow.

Tompkins. And so she said, you know, I think Barb said I, you know, she was praying. That someone like Mary Beth, she wanted Mary Beth to take it on and, and so she did. And um, it was right as one was ending that began, and it was amazing right from the start. We had over a hundred and some women right? The very first year.

And we’ve had that every year for eight years. Wow. And a lot of it was word of mouth, um, or they’d see our banner on the street or they’d hear from other moms. And, um, and a lot was the way Mary Beth, um, leads and love as well, the moms and, um, She’s very devoted to her prayer life and to, um, the Lord. But she also just poured into the tituss that she chose.

Handpicked, okay. Some tituss, um, women. And she had about six, um, or six or seven Titus groups where they would meet, they’d have a class, and then they’d break into their groups and build those relationships. And, um, you know, it, it being a stay home mom. with my youngest daughter. I had no idea how isolating that can be and how hard that can be, and no one’s telling you you’re doing a good job.

And most of the time they feel like they’re failing. And so that class really kind of pours into those moms that are kind of isolated at home and, and, and teaches them biblical parenting and discipline and things like that. And so, um, it’s been amazing to watch. It’s been incredible to. partner with her that and yeah.

And um, somewhere in the middle of that, Heather came along and, um, helping us with the nursery. And that’s also been incredible. And, you know, the, the, it’s a good, it’s a great team and it’s a beautiful outreach and watching our. Prayer, Mary Beth from day one, her and I, the, our prayer was always that, um, moms would start worshiping here.

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