Rain does not stop Glade parish from raising funds for Legacy Clinic

A benefit concert May 17 scheduled to raise funds for a new vehicle for the St. Mary’s Legacy Clinic that serves Cumberland County had to be canceled because of weather.

The goal was to raise money to assist with the purchase of a new clinic bus and to fund medical equipment and supplies, including medications, to better serve patients. Nonetheless, and despite the rain, the fundraiser was a complete success.

When word got out at St. Francis of Assisi in Fairfield Glade that the Legacy Clinic needed a new mobile clinic bus, the parish Social Action Ministry went into high gear. After all, St. Mary has been bringing their ministry of free medical care to the uninsured in Cumberland County since 2014.

“We were made aware that the Sisters of Mercy of Alma [Mich.] and many volunteers, doctors, and nurses had recently extended their outreach to Crossville, using St. Alphonsus Parish as their base. We wanted to help and encourage their tremendous charity to as many people as possible” said Father Michael Woods, pastor of St. Francis of Assisi.

The ministry set a date of May 17 and acquired the popular Grove venue in Fairfield Glade. They reached out to all the churches, advertised to promote it, and offered a free concert with the well-known Nashville band Soul Soup as the main attraction.

“Whenever Soul Soup plays here in Fairfield Glade, 1,000 to 1,500 people come out,” Father Woods said. “We were going to pass the hat and hoped to raise $10,000,” he added.

It rained heavily on the 17th, and the event had to be canceled. Not to be discouraged, the Social Action Ministry brought its cause to the parish congregation of St. Francis of Assisi that same weekend. They told the story of the clinic and the needs it has to continue its ministry, and received donations that far exceeded the $10,000 goal they had set for the fundraiser. What at first seemed a great disappointment—months of planning and preparation that were canceled because of rain—was replaced with elation. More than $15,000 was raised for the clinic.

St. Mary’s Legacy Clinic is a 40-foot, fully-equipped medical van that has been traveling to Cumberland County for more than 10 years, setting up its mobile clinic in Crab Orchard. This year, the clinic expanded to include Crossville, and it sets up at St. Alphonsus Church on the fourth Tuesday of each month. All services are free. Patients are not charged for primary-care medical services that may include laboratory work and medications.

The clinic is staffed by the Sisters of Mercy of Alma, who are licensed doctors and nurses, and they are assisted by local medical professional volunteers. It is funded solely by donations. For more information about the services offered by St. Mary’s Legacy Clinic or ways to help, visit www.smlcares.com or call 865-212-5570.

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