Come with me my sweet
Let's go make a family
And they will bring us joy, for always.
Back in the late 80s, it seemed like every newly-married couple danced their first dance to the same beautiful song: "Always" by Atlantic Starr. The lyrics were filled with love and promises for the future, not just for two hearts in love, but for the children they would hope to have one day.
That's what love is... a commitment two souls make to one another, and the desire to grow that love, partnering with God to bring new life into the world, and allowing that love to become a legacy to future generations. That song underlined the refrain of hope that touches each of our hearts.
In a little city in Metro Atlanta, hope abounds among the lives and hearts of new immigrants hoping for a fresh start in a land of promise. For decades, refugees have come to call Clarkston, GA their new home, their haven from the loss and destruction they left behind when they came to America. These refugees come from over fifty countries, brimming with hope for themselves, and especially for their children. They are ready to move forward and forge new lives, creating a new legacy for future generations.
And they need our help.
Kelli Czaykowsky, an Atlanta resident who heard about the needs of these refugees and felt a burden too great to ignore, formed a non-profit organization called Friends of Refugees Providing Empowerment and Education, aptly shortened to F.R.E.E. Through this organization and its volunteers, Kelli is able to provide refugees in Clarkston with the gift of hope. Each day, lunches are lovingly prepared and delivered by F.R.E.E. volunteers, often the only meal the refugees eat that day. Once bellies are full, shelter is found, and basic necessities such as clothing, mattresses, and furniture are provided. F.R.E.E. volunteers work to take refugees to and from doctor and dentist appointments, help them fill out forms and register for school, and assist in job searches. English as a Second Language instruction is provided in-home to adults, while children are taught one-on-one to prepare them to enter school.
These refugees are having their physical needs met, and through the education they are being given, they will be able to continue their new lives independently. Many of those who were among the first to come to Clarkston are now in a position to give back, and help others who are just starting their new journey in freedom.
We can help by volunteering our time and/or our resources. In order to spread the word of this worthy and satisfying endeavor, F.R.E.E. is hosting a concert to raise money and awareness of the plight of the refugees of Clarkston, and the opportunities available to help those in need. "An Evening of Praise: Celebrating Unity and Diversity" is a benefit concert that will be held on June 16, 2017 at 7:00 pm at the Infinite Energy Theater in Duluth, GA. Dr. and Mrs. Meadows, through Meadows Surgical Arts, is the Platinum Sponsor for this event. Special guests who will be performing at this concert include Committed (an a cappella group, NBC's "Sing-Off" Season 2 champions), New Creation (Atlanta's own a cappella chorale), Steve Darmody (gospel vocal artist), Mariela Shaker (world-renowned classical violinist), and Avery Dixon (award-winning saxophonist). All of the concert proceeds will go directly towards the needs of the Clarkston refugees.
But wait... there's more. Guess who is emceeing this incredible benefit concert?
David and Marian Lewis. That's right. The guy who wrote and performed "Always" back in 1987. David was a founding member of Atlantic Starr, and his wife, Marian, was a top print and runway model for the Ford modeling agency in New York. In 1994, they left their glittering careers behind and dedicated themselves to sharing the hope, love, grace, and forgiveness that can only be found in God.
Dr. and Mrs. Meadows would be honored to have you join them, together with David and Marian Lewis, for an evening of praise, a celebration of the love of Christ, and a call to give hope to the children... the legacy of our future.
Call the Infinite Energy Theater at the number listed below, or click on the link below, to purchase tickets to this event, and join us as we celebrate the unity and diversity that is found in Clarkston, and help to empower the refugees there to put loss behind them and grasp the hope that a new beginning can bring.
AN EVENING OF PRAISE
CELEBRATING UNITY AND DIVERSITY
Hosted by Friends of Refugees Providing Empowerment and Education (F.R.E.E.)
Sponsored in part by Dr. & Mrs. Meadows, Meadows Surgical Arts
Friday, June 16, 20177:00 pm
Tickets available at
Infinite Energy Theater