Pearly’s son Neil was present, and his words touched many, both to honor his mom and as a tribute to the warm community he has witnessed from a distance during the years his mother has worked at CCSM. Here is a bit of what he shared:
My mom didn’t work when I was born; she took care of me and my younger brother full time until I think middle school. Then she went back to work. After trying a couple of different places, she ended up here, and I can see why she has stayed all this time. There is so much love here. That’s a rare thing in this world, but it’s very evident to me that this is the real thing, that you all actually love each other. This is really a community where people take care of each other.
I have heard so many of the names over the years, and I know who all of you are, I just don’t know who you are… So it’s good today seeing the faces that go to those names. I have been in and out of here through the years and today it’s really coming together for me, hearing your stories, what this place is.
I have never been much of a “church person” per se, but you all have changed my opinion over time of what a church can be. You all say you’re open and all are welcome and you really mean it, it absolutely shows. In this world where right now we are all being so divisive it’s amazing to see a community of people who truly love and support each each other and everyone. It’s been great to get to know you, even indirectly. Thank you and God bless.