Sometimes, a single person steps forward to take the load off the shoulders of a neighbor, to beautifuy his community, to make things better for her town or the planet. But sometimes, it's a group of people who decide that it is their duty to work together because they can accomplish more by combining their efforts.
Such is the case of the Creola/Axis Ministerial Association (CAMA), which sponsors such events as "Day in the Park" at Creola City Park each Spring, Easter "Sonrise" Service at the park and the annual Christmas toy drive.
Pastor William T. Chambers of Creola is the current president of the association, but, he said, the idea for CAMA was the brainchild of Brian Cowley, former pastor of Creola United Methodist Church. "Bro. Brian saw a need for unity in the community," Chambers said. "He saw our area as fertile ground for the church families coming together first and then (that) the community as a whole could benefit from it."
Chambers said that there are 14 churches in the Creola/Axis area, a diverse group of different denominational and non-denominational backgrounds, ethnicity and social levels. "We are the face of America, you might say," Bro. Chambers said. Nine churches actively support the organization and all do so when they are called on individually, he said.
"We have stayed true to our founding beliefs, in that we don't discuss our denominational differences, but common ground, our spiritual relationship in the LORD and COMM-UNITY," he said.
Chambers said that the annual Day in the Park is "the flagship" of what members of the Creola/Axis Ministerial Association believe in. "We set aside a day where the churches come together and give the community a free fun day. We give everything away; we bring in those in the city/county who offer services, government and private, that the citizens may not be familiar with. We have health checks and screenings, voter registration . . . " The group also sponsors a 3-night revival in the fall, as well as the other events mentioned.
Creola Assembly of God pastor, Rev. John White, added that the CAMA is accomplishing "what we as churches should do. The Bible," he said, "speaks of one church, one body . . . and what we do, our vision, our mission is to bring unity to the community."