MASON — A time of not only celebrating, but also of learning, will take place Monday evening when the Bend Area Celebrate Recovery organization hosts its six year anniversary event.
Set for 6:30 p.m., the anniversary will be held at The Center, the former Mason Elementary School, located at 516 Adams Street in Mason.
The public is invited, according to Laura Rupe, one of several Celebrate Recovery leaders. She added it will be a great chance for people to come and learn about the organization. Chad and Jamitha Dodson will be leading live music, and a participant from Celebrate Recovery in Charleston will be giving a testimony of overcoming her personal issues, and how Celebrate Recovery was a part of that.
A short presentation on what Celebrate Recovery is, and how it works, will follow the music and testimony. Rupe said the evening will end with cake, coffee, and fellowship.
Celebrate Recovery is a faith-based, 12-step program, whose higher power is Jesus Christ, Rupe said. She added it is for “life’s hurts, habits and hang-ups,” and is not limited to alcohol or drug addiction. Rupe stated some of the issues faced by members and past members have included grief, depression, food issues, pornography addiction, low self-esteem, self-injury, anger, sexual integrity issues, and others.
Under Ministry Leader Melissa Carlyon, the Bend Area Celebrate Recovery meets weekly on Mondays at 6:30 p.m. at The Center. Rupe said after completion of the program, the 12th step includes the participant continuing to attend the meetings and giving back to newcomers.
While the meeting place for Bend Area Celebrate Recovery is supplied by Northbend Church, Rupe said there are leaders from other churches, as well, including Middleport Church of Christ and The Rock in Jackson, Ohio. The group is partially funded through Bethel Church in Tuppers Plains, with all remaining operational obligations coming from fundraisers.
One of the highlighted accomplishments of Bend Area Celebrate Recovery is the joining with Vinton Baptist Church’s “Strong Tower Recovery Group” to take the 12-step program into the Lakin Women’s Correctional Facility. “Celebrate Recovery Inside” began a year ago and is about to graduate its first group of step study participants, Rupe said. A second group has already started, with a third to begin in January.
She said the program inside the prison is run the same as on the outside. And, because Celebrate Recovery is a national group operating in all 50 states, when prisoners are released they know the format and can find a group near them no matter where they go. It transitions from the inside to the outside.
Celebrate Recovery is also international in its efforts, with organizations in a number of countries.
Mindy Kearns is a freelance writer for Ohio Valley Publishing, email her at [email protected]