|More than 450 gather to recognize 38 ‘Giants in the Faith’|
The Apostle Paul says in Romans 1:8, “I thank my God for all of you because your faith is being reported all over the world.”
That’s the scripture printed on the program for the annual Giants in the Faith banquet that was held on Aug. 17 at Hueber’s Winery in Starlight.
Giants in the Faith is an event used to recognize folks that either live or worship in Floyd County who put their faith into action.
Those who were recognized had their names submitted to Hope Southern Indiana and 38 Giants were recognized at this year’s event.
Since the event began in 2007 more than 200 Giants have been recognized.
Among the 38 recognized this year, most at first didn’t want the spotlight to shine on them.
One of those is Eloise “Wiese” Carlisle, whose name was submitted by Betsy Walters.
“When Betsy first spoke to me about submitting my name as a ‘Giant in the Faith,’ my response was no way; not me. I’m not one to relish in the spotlight; I much prefer to be in the shadow of it,” Carlisle said. “But as Betsy explained, it’s not really about Wiese ... it’s more about how Wiese is being obedient to the Almighty Giant and reflecting the spotlight back upon Him.”
Carlisle said if her being honored was a way of honoring God, than she was in.
“I have no idea why He finds favor in this simple country girl, but I’m not going to question Him,” Carlisle said. “I realize that Jesus’ love for me has nothing to do with how I feel or what I think I deserve.”
Carlisle, who attends church at Northside Christian, currently serves as board president of the Dayspring Emmaus Community and also serves in various local ministries including Jesus Cares at Exit 0, which organizes meals for the homeless in Southern Indiana.
She is also very involved in the REC (Residents Encounter Christ), which is a ministry that takes the Gospel message to men and women in Southern Indiana who are incarcerated.
Another of this year’s Giants, who is heavily involved in the REC community is Tonye Rutherford.
Rutherford, like Carlisle, at first didn’t want to be recognized for his work for the Lord.
“My first thought was I don’t deserve to be submitted as a so-called Giant in the Faith,” he said. “I do what I feel God leads me to do. Not for the notoriety or any recognition at all, only what I feel God has led me to do.”
Rutherford will lead an upcoming REC at the Clark County jail.
Rutherford, who attends Emmaus Road Church, had his name submitted by Wendy Stepro.
Outside of being honored at this year’s event, which was held in front of more than 450 people, the 2014 Giants in the Faith, all have their own Giants in their life who have led the way for them on their faith walks.
For Rutherford it is his mother-in-law and father-in-law, Richard and Vie Tinius.
Carlisle said there are too many Giants in her own life to count them all.
“Betsy and Daryll Walters are indeed giants in my life,” she said. “They lead by example and not necessarily with just words. To be seen in their eyes as a giant is humbling, at best. I see Jesus when I look at them. And isn’t that what it’s all about anyway ... being Jesus to others?”
The annual event is made possible by sponsors.
This year’s sponsors were the News and Tribune, First Harrison Bank, Seabrook Dieckmann & Naville Funeral Homes, L & D Mail Masters and Aebersold Florist.
At this year’s event Monica Hunter led the invocation and Rev. Allen Colwell led the singing of To God Be the Glory.
Bridge the Gap, a vocal duo featuring Colwell and Chris Schepers provided musical entertainment.
Billy Shannon led the benediction.
Christine Harbeson, who is the executive director of Hope Southern Indiana, honored the Giants.
The following is a list of this year’s Giants who were honored at the Aug. 17 event.
Kathy Anderson and Fritz McCauley (Mt. Tabor Presbyterian Church); Ken and Ruth Bandy (Wesley Chapel UMC); Helen and Tim Bohannon (Grace Lutheran Church); Holly Braden (Centenary UMC); Carlisle (Northside Christian); Tim Crockett (Grace Lutheran Church); Jeannie Duley (Silver Street UMC); Marjorie Finney (St. John Presbyterian Church; Diane Fischer (St. Mary’s Catholic Church Navilleton; Michael Grantz (Faithpoint UMC); Ruth Heideman (Northside Christian Church); Auggie and Carol Hinz (Grace Lutheran Church); Dr. Bill Hockman (Northside Christian Church); Ron and Mary Beth King (Wesley Chapel UMC); Brenda Masden (Northside Christian Church); Tom and Debbie Ogden (Wesley Chapel UMC); Jaci Owen (St. John Presbyterian Church); Elizabeth Prince (St. John Presbyterian Church); Rutherford (Emmaus Road Church); Ron and Donna Schad (Graceland Baptist Church); Alice Schleicher (Atkins Chapel UMC); Juanita Schmitt (Trinity UMC); Mark Seabrook (Our Lady of Perpetual Help Catholic Church); Bill Smith (St. Mary’s of the Knobs Catholic Church; Debbie Smith (Wesley Chapel UMC); Sandy Sorrells (The Crossing Christian Church); Terri Ann Sumner (St. John Presbyterian Church); Milt and Trudy Wehrenberg (Grace Lutheran Church); DeVonne Whiting (New Dimensions Christian Church) and Thomas Yost (Our Lady or Perpetual Help Catholic Church).
Hope Southern Indiana is a Christ-focused non-profit ministry that serves the whole community since 1964 as the bridge between churches and the community. Hope serves as collaborator and partner through a number of programs.