Local church begins collecting coats
Though he's been in Lawton only two months, Pastor Gregory Hines is taking a big leap of faith into community affairs.
The 37-year-old Hines was assigned to pastor Lawton's New Life Seventh-Day Adventist Church after earning his bachelor's degree from Oakwood University in Huntsville, Ala. Though it's normally a four-year program, he was able to complete his graduation requirements in three. Now he's pursuing his master's in pastoral studies, also at Oakwood, and expects to get that degree in May 2018.
Hines is getting involved with his new community by conducting a coat drive. The goal is to gather up coats to be given away in conjunction with Feed the Children's next food distribution in Lawton. Coats may be dropped off at the church at 701 SW McKinley between 6-8 p.m. on Tuesdays or between 4-6 p.m. on Saturdays.
This time the Feed the Children giveaway will be indoors at Cameron Baptist Church, 2621 SW C, on Nov. 9. Opening remarks will be at 2:30 p.m. and pre-identified families that Lawton Support Services has provided with time-stamped vouchers will begin picking up their food baskets at 3 p.m., according to Elizabeth Logan, senior director of public relations and communications for Feed the Children. New Life Seventh-Day Adventist Church will be partnering with them in the distribution to an estimated 400 families so that they are able to have a good Thanksgiving.
"Along with that we're doing Toys for Tots in December. Nov. 11 we're doing a Veterans Day appreciation program, giving an award to Fort Sill and also giving an award to Cameron University to the cadets and the commander there, basically for their leadership across the world as well as here in Lawton, Oklahoma," Hines said.
"In March we'll be doing vacation Bible school and a big revival March 31 through April 21," said Hines. That will be at the church, both indoors and out.
Hines is originally from Fayetteville, N.C. His father was in the military, so he spent six years in Germany while the family was stationed there. He himself served in the Army for two years before he was medically discharged in May 2001. At the time, he was stationed at Fort Drum, N.Y., and his military occupational specialty was transportation specialist, or truck driver.