Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Aglow helps out Christian women

'Stranger' who came to Kildonan woman's rescue wasn't really a stranger

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WHEN Lynda Neufeld had to stay in Toronto for a couple months to get radiation treatment, she had the usual worries.

Where would she stay? If her husband came with her on the trip, would his job suffer? Would she be lonely in a city where she knew no one?

That's when a 'stranger' came to the rescue.

She belonged to a Toronto chapter of Aglow, the same Christian women's organization Neufeld had been attending for almost two decades back home in Winnipeg.

"This lady, I never met her in my life, put me up for two months," says Neufeld, vice-president of the Kildonan branch of Aglow. "It was just encouragement. She took me to an Aglow meeting in Toronto. She was a perfect stranger but a link was there."

Aglow is an international organization that began in Seattle in 1968. Its purpose is to unite women of all Christian faiths within their communities. Today, the organization exists in 145 countries.

There are six Aglow chapters in Winnipeg. The Kildonan chapter has been meeting for 24 years.

Neufeld's group meets for two hours once a month at the Church of God of Prophecy on Tweed Avenue. During the meeting, the approximately 30 women in the group have dessert and coffee.

And they pray and talk.

Neufeld says there is a guest speaker at each meeting, an Aglow member who shares an inspirational story.

"These are just ordinary women, but everybody has a story to tell," she explains, adding that the group is often a source of strength, particularly when members are going through some of life's tougher moments. "When you're down, they are a group who will listen to you, support you and pray for you."

Aglow is more than just a group from which to gain spirituality; it's also a place to gain friendship and a sense of purpose, says Neufeld. The then stay-at-home mom signed on with the group 20 years ago as a way to get out of the house and meet like-minded women.

Most of her friends are people she has met through Aglow. It's also opened her eyes to various branches of Christianity.

"We don't talk about what denominations we belong to. But I've learned a lot," says Neufeld.

"Different things in life come and go. But this group as always been there for me."

The next Aglow meeting will take place on Sept. 10 at 1 p.m. For more information, contact Neufeld at 663-6192. Admission is free.

PHOTO MIKE DEAL/WINNIPEG FREE PRESS

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition September 3, 2003 $sourceSection$sourcePage

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