Singing the Song of the Unsung

There are so many people I view as unsung heroes.

They do extraordinary things without all the headlines and recognition.

My goal over the next few lines of this post is to sing the praises of the unsung heroes.

So here we go:

Let’s begin with all the wonderful Kid’s Life workers. They give time, effort and energy in our elementary kids’s ministry.

Angie & Andy Derrick – both work full-time, raise their own kids and love and lead in Kid’s Life.

Adrian Duarte – amazing dad, great softball player and little league coach and wonderful teaching to our kids.

Kim Kuzner – gifted teacher, mother of three and as I recently found out, quite a gardener.

Norm Jones – I’m slightly biased here, but I consider him to be the best children’s writer to never be published. I hope the “unpublished” part changes soon.

Scott Simpson, Steve Schuh, & Erick Schug – all part of the Kid’s Life team and you’d never know. They don’t brag or seek attention for the vital roles they play.

Next up, some people who have worked and served and given above and beyond the call of duty.

Josephine Azus – a greeter who smiles and greets everyone who comes through her door each and every Sunday.

Alice & Blair Walsh – this couple leads and organizes our church greeting team. Wonderfully kind people who seek no attention for their efforts.

Lorna & Ozzie Williams – Lorna greets people with her friend Josephine. Ozzie can be found smiling, hugging, greeting and seating people every Sunday at NWLife.

Dorothy & Lance Schubert – She bakes goodies for church every week. She rarely comes to church empty handed. Why? Because she wants to church to feel like home. Lance has blessed our church with his warmth and financial generosity. He loves God, people and the church.

Debbie Pangburn – She started serving a little over a year ago and hasn’t looked back since. She cooks, greets, and serves virtually every week at NWLife.

Erin & Dan Bryan – This is an unsung power couple. They serve in all three services every single week at NWLife. Their love for God, the church and people is inspiring.

Here are a few unsung heroes from our Celebrate Recovery Team:

Mark Westbrook – He’s not hiding from his addiction. Instead he’s using his recovery from it to help others come out of the woodwork and find hope.

Shaun Jones – Not just a CR guy. Many people know who he is, though they probably don’t realize all he does. CR, youth, worship, music teacher, media director and more. If it you see it or hear it on Sunday or on our website. Shaun likely had a hand in producing it.

Alison Morford – new to our church. Alison is wonderful leader and Open Share group facilitator. CR is better because of her efforts.

Mikaila Tynes – Celebrate recovery leader, children’s worker and all around neat gal. We are better because Mikaila serves with us.

And how bout a few people from our Youth Ministry team:

Danielle Bolinger – It’s silly to put her with just one team. She is a utility player. She serves and helps wherever there is a need. From watching kids, hosting youth services, to leading her CR group. She makes things happen all around NWLife.

Grant Millard – Again, categorizing him as youth only would be dumb. Grant’s love for God is shown in his willingness to role up his sleeves and help anywhere at anytime.

Cristian Arroyo – If you’ve attended a service in the last five years you’d probably recognize Cristian. He rocks out from his position as lead electric guitar. He also develops and trains young musicians on a weekly basis.

Shannel Williams – She’s been at NWLife for many years. She’s a veteran leader in youth and she’s capable of leading in many more areas. Shannel is fantastic and we’re lucky to have her.

Summer Interns – It’s not fair to list them as one group, but I really have no choice. This post would triple in length if I tried to write about them all. I love our Summer Interns, they make ministry happen each week at NWLife. I am proud of them and love them so much.

Did I mention our Kid’s Life Jr. Team? They help with our kids from birth to first grade.

Wanda Hunter – All the kids love Wanda. When they’re in her class they become “her kids.” She is loving and loves to laugh and share her smile with them.

Darlene Oathout – She has served faithfully for years. This lady doesn’t want or need the spotlight but she deserves recognition for all her time and effort.

Wanetta Young – She is a NWLife lifer. She has taken care of all my children from birth. She watches them during the week in our nursery. “Miss Netta” has made a huge impact on the life of my kids. I am forever grateful for her kind, sweet spirit and for her loving patience. She is amazing.

And now for a few people that make my life better. They are wonderful for who they are as well as what they do.

Erica Jones – She’s my sister. My wife and I literally owe her childcare for life. She loves and genuinely cares for people. She doesn’t want or need a mic, but when she has it she’s compelling. When she gets married, her husband better not try to move her away from us.

Tamara & Giancarlo Papini – They are our number one vacation pals. We’ve traveled numerous times with this couple and they are incredible. They serve at NWLife, they give, they befriend and welcome so many. Your life will be better when you get to know the Papini family.

Reggie Robinson – He came through our youth ministry and is now a full grown man. He works 40+ hours a week and still has time to help wherever he’s needed at the church. Reggie is so kind and playful with my kids. One of the first questions they ask when we get to church is, “Is Reggie here?”

One of the most dangerous things about writing a post like this is you ALWAYS end up leaving people out. That’s not my intention but I realize I will.

Let me quickly wrap up by recognizing a few groups of people I admire:

The single mom who does the huge job of parenting on her own.

Praying grandmothers everywhere. Don’t stop. Prayer makes a difference.

The double shift-working parent. You don’t get enough credit, but providing for your family is a true sign of your love and care for them.

The church tither. Thanks for faithfully giving. We literally can’t have a church without you. Thanks for being generous and helping us reach people.


Thanks to all the unsung heroes who make a difference without asking for credit and recognition.

As I mentioned earlier, I love writing these because I get to shed light on those who don’t normally run for the spotlight.

Also, I KNOW I missed singing about some of the unsung heroes.

So help me out! Who are some of your unsung heroes?

Please write about them and share their exploits below.

I’d love to read about more great people doing things that often go unnoticed.

5 thoughts on “Singing the Song of the Unsung

  1. Sheryl Bergman, serves in Kid’s Life and always gravitates towards the kids who maybe play by themselves or don’t seem to be too sure where they might be welcomed or fit in

  2. First of all, couldn’t agree more with what you said about your dad! Can’t even imagine what Kid’s Life would be without him.
    My addition to your list…Bryan Stanton. Serves as a board member, on the worship team, cooks for The 5, always has a hand in whatever building improvement project is going on, and pretty much anything else that needs done. I’ve never met anyone that loves The Church as much as Bryan.

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