Compassionate women get the royal treatment


Attendees pray during the Compassionate Outreach Ministries Royalty Dinner Saturday at the Gainesville/Alachua County Senior Recreation Center.

ELIZABETH HAMILTON/Special to the Guardian
Published: Wednesday, January 30, 2013 at 1:51 p.m.
Last Modified: Wednesday, January 30, 2013 at 1:51 p.m.

Margaret Dennison, first lady of Compassionate Outreach Ministries, expressed her love and gratitude to the women of the church with an elegant dinner, music, praise dancing and a crowning ceremony.

Facts

COMPASSIONATE OUTREACH MINISTRIES

Pastor: Bishop Larry James Dennison.
Location: 320 SE 43rd St.
Services: Sunday morning worship is 10 a.m. and evening worship is 6 p.m. Midweek fellowship is 7 p.m. Wednesday.
Phone: 352-373-1888.

"They're so good to me," Dennison said. "They treat me like a queen and I wanted them to be served like queens. Tonight is their night, starting the new year as queens."

The nearly 140 women who attended the Royalty Dinner held Saturday at the Gainesville/Alachua County Senior Recreation Center were treated to a red carpet greeting with cheers and hugs by Dennison and members of the Women Fellowship Committee.

The highlight of the evening was the "Adorning of Crowns" ceremony, when all of the women received a crown. "God is calling the queen inside of you to come out," said Shawndria Dennison, daughter of Bishop Larry James Dennison, pastor of the church, and Margaret Dennison.

She quoted Timothy 4:8, James 1:12 and Thessalonians 2:19. Shawndria Dennison sang "Break Every Chain" by Tasha Cobbs.

"We're here to honor the women of glory, to give them glory and praise," said Minister Cynthia Harmon of the Gainesville Family Worship Center, who served as mistress of ceremony.

Harmon called Dennison a champion of the faith and her hero. "I thank God for all the years working under her auspices," Harmon said. "After being in contact with her, my life has not been the same."

Minister Rutha Harrison of Compassionate Outreach Ministries, delivered the welcome. "We're women of royalty," Harrison said. "Women of God, women of grace and women of integrity."

The Compassionate Outreach Ministries Praise Ensemble sang "Welcome Into This Place" by Gary Oliver and "Jesus is My Rock" by Gerald Thompson. The Compassionate Outreach Ministries Praise Dancers performed to the song "Royalty" by Byron Cage.

The women of Compassionate performed a skit titled "The Royal Limousine."

In this limousine, the passengers were three sinners who were headed to a party and several women of God who were determined and eventually succeeded in getting the sinners to accept Jesus as their savior.

Margaret Dennison delivered the following message to the women of her church, who were now wearing sparkling silver crowns: "To the wonderful and royal women of Compassionate, you all are jewels in my heart. Words cannot begin to express my sincere appreciation and love for the favor God has shown toward me in giving me women such as you who continue to hold up the arms of your leaders with such unwavering love and devotion. My prayer is that each of you will be blessed royally in the new year and that as God favors me, the blessings will run down and overtake you as well."

In her closing remarks, Margaret Dennison told the women to be kind to each other, love each other, support each other and encourage each other.

The program received high praise.

Beatrice Flagg said she could feel the love in the room.

"I feel an inner peace, love and fellowship among the women of Compassionate," Flagg said. "I feel loved."

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