Spearfish church serves Black Hills with community service

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Spearfish, SD A Spearfish Church is serving God through community service, Saturday.

Volunteers helped out with dozens of projects across the region.

Jullie Totino, a church member, said "We love our community, we love our church, and we love our Lord."

That's the message they're painting - while making a difference in the Black Hills.

More than 600 volunteers helped at Countryside Church's 6th annual Weekend of Compassion, Saturday.

James Williams, the communications coordinator for Countryside Church, said "To show people that God cares, and through God's people - God cares."

They took on about 50 total projects across the region.

Black Hills FOX reporter Robert Grant said "The Weekend of Compassion brings community service to all parts of the Black Hills - from the Black Hills Christian Academy, to helping senior citizens at the Hickory House, or even serving the Cornerstone Rescue Mission."

From helping with personal needs...

Ken Drury, a church member, said "There's a lot of elderly people that have problems with their homes."

...to taking on city projects and benefiting non-profits...and Countryside will close their doors tomorrow as well to continue the weekend of service.

Williams said "We want people to know that God doesn't just call us to go to church, God calls us to be the church."

The project started with just a few hundred volunteers several years ago and has grown ever since.

This crew was busy cleaning up Black Hills Christian Academy - a non-profit school in Spearfish.

Williams said "We're able to reach people by just helping them with their needs."

But organizers stress, this shouldn't be a one-time event.

Williams said "One of those weekends where we get to flex our compassion muscle. But really, our challenge to everybody is to not just make it about this weekend, but to use that muscle competitively all the time."

And if you're interested in volunteering tomorrow, you can contact Countryside Church through their Facebook page.

Drury said "It's all good stuff. Just everybody is welcome."