The Spruce Street United Methodist Men at the beginning of the year decided to give members of all of the Monongalia Country volunteer fire departments a copy of Strength for Service to God and Community, a book of daily devotions for first responders.
It was decided that it would be best to give out the books at each fire department’s monthly meeting. This was accomplished with the help of United Methodist Men members Roger Britton, Joe Pride, John Beaumont, David Weaver, Dan Eranrich and Kenny Goodwin.
The volunteer fire departments in Blacksville, Brookhaven, Cassville, Cheat Lake, Clinton District, Cool Springs, Granville, River Road, Star City, Triune Halleck and Westover were visited.
Each meeting was attended by 15-20 volunteer firefighters. Some firefighters looked through the book, read some of the devotions, and gave thanks for the authors. A total of about 170 books were distributed.
“I feel one of the things that helped was that I know where each of the volunteers were coming from and their feelings, for I have walked in their boots, done and seen some of the things that they have to go through during a run, and I know that no two runs are the same and you always have to expect the unexpected,” said Donald Davis, who organized the book distribution. Davis is president of the Spruce Street United Methodist Men. Davis was a firefighter from 1961-67 when he served in the U.S. Air Force.
“God Bless the members of the fire departments and the men in blue, for they will always be there when needed,” Davis said.
In recent years Strength for Service books have been distributed to first responders by several other United Methodist men’s fellowships in West Virginia, including a distribution by Cross Lanes United Methodist Church men in the Cross Lanes and Tyler Mountain areas and a distribution by First United Methodist Church of South Charleston men in South Charleston.