Sheryl Preston, a board member at First Street Methodist Mission (FSMM), is an impressive woman with a servant’s heart. She truly embodies the spirit of 1 Peter 4:10 — “Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms.” Sheryl’s work at FSMM helps feed the hungry, clothe the naked, and shelter the homeless. When she is not helping the Mission, Sheryl serves FUMCFW as the treasurer for United Methodist Women and is a member of the Wesley Bible Sunday School class. Outside of church, you might find her traveling, playing Bridge, sewing, cooking, or gardening. One thing is for sure — she will definitely be spending time with her children and “four perfect grandchildren.”
Sheryl is a retired high school teacher and principal who dedicated her career to improving the lives of others. In retirement, she wanted to continue this work and believes volunteering at the Mission allows her to fulfill this goal. She also says that she likes to “get things done” by being behind the scenes in order to support the people who work face to face with our guests.
Sheryl started helping the Mission, while still employed full time, by shopping! Rev. Page Hines asked her to go to garage sales on the weekends in order to purchase men’s jeans, shoes, and backpacks, which are always a high need at FSMM.
When Sheryl retired, she continued shopping for the Mission, and also volunteered in the Clothing Ministry each week by sorting and hanging clothes for our guests (Mondays from 10:00 am – 12:30 pm, and Wednesdays from 2:30 – 4:00 pm). In addition, she was involved with intake and filling grocery sacks during Grocery hours (Wednesdays and Thursdays from 10:00 am – 1:00 pm). She also delivered backpacks, full of food for families who do not have enough to eat, to local schools through the Food 4 Kids program. Plus, she became a volunteer for Room in the Inn, which provides a safe place for some of our male guests to sleep during the hottest and coldest months of the year.
Sheryl’s current role at the Mission involves serving on the Board and shopping for items that go in Home Startup Kits, which is a one-time service that includes basic housing supplies for chronically homeless individuals who receive housing for the first time. She also picks up items donated to the Mission and sells them through an online estate sale auction site. Although Sheryl has only completed one auction so far, she is “working on the second with hopes that it will be quite profitable.” Auction proceeds will pay for more Startup Kits, which can be quite costly.
“I chose to be part of the Board because Elizabeth (Becker) asked me to!” Sheryl jests. She has been a member of the Mission Board for two years, and decided to take this important step because she is “interested in all the ways we serve people.” She also wanted to be more involved in running the Mission and administrative needs. Sheryl says that she believes in our mission statement: “First Street Methodist Mission strives to meet the basic needs of others in an atmosphere of respect and love for all of God’s children while acknowledging that we receive so much more than we give,” and wanted to influence how we live out this mission.
First Street Methodist Mission is blessed to have such a dedicated volunteer and board member in Sheryl Preston. In 2015, the Mission provided 548 Home Startup Kits, largely due to Sheryl and other faithful volunteers.
Thank you, Sheryl, for your hard work and dedication to FSMM. We are blessed that you decided to become part of our family.
Kim and FSMM