I’m the store manager for Altar’d State in Frisco, TX. I’ve worked with Kristianne and Compassion That Compels since the early days of our Mission Monday partnership. All of the Compassion Bag recipients from our store are precious to me. One special lady invited me into to her inner circle of cancer support, and I’ll never forget her or my first experience with her group.

Cindy had been blessed with a Compassion Bag through our store. As she suffered through her own pain from cancer and treatment, she saw that many other women in the cancer center looked to each other for support and comfort. They were all going through similar events, no matter how young or old. Cindy wanted to reach out to the others in a bigger way. She organized a few gatherings and invited the women she’d come to know through her battle. This was the beginning of a group that she called, “Sisters Fight Club”. The group’s mission is, according the its website, a ”faith-based, hands on, local support group for women searching for encouragement, fellowship, and love as they fight cancer."

Cindy wanted to reach out to the others in a bigger way.

 

Cindy reached out to Kristianne about a Christmas party she was holding. Cindy asked if she could receive a few Compassion Bags for women in the group. I got the call to help, and I was thrilled to be able to bring joy to the women. I prepared about a half-dozen bags, filled with the amazing gifts that would give the women comfort and hope. I invited one of the employees and my son, Talon, to join me.

On the day of the party, I was running on 2 hours of sleep. Retail work will do this to you sometimes! Still, I would not have missed the Sisters Fight Club party for anything. My employee and I, along with Talon, each carried Compassion Bags into the room. The brave women, other than the leader, didn’t know what was coming. They were so surprised to be blessed with these gifts! I explained about Mission Monday, told the beautiful Compassion That Compels story, and handed out the bags. Tears flowed from many eyes on to their beautiful cheeks, but there was no sadness. The brave cancer-fighting ladies cried because they were touched and happy. They looked over all the items, commenting on how each was special. The blanket, always a favorite item, got touches and hugs. They knew that the pretty mug, when filled with scripture tea, would provide warmth to body and soul. The women gained inspiration from the Compassion That Compels and Mission Monday stories, the gifts, and our visit. Cindy’s compassion for her fellow battlers led to this joyful celebration.

Tears flowed from many eyes on to their beautiful cheeks, but there was no sadness.

 

Talon enjoys being part of the Compassion Bag delivery process. On one trip, there were so many bags in the car that he was completely surrounded, barely fitting in the vehicle. This was a funny site, like the photos posted online of a baby or a puppy in the middle of a bunch of stuffed animals! Talon enjoys being involved with Mission Monday and Compassion That Compels. He makes a point to visit Kristianne when she’s representing Compassion That Compels at our store. I love passing along the spirit of giving to him!

Just as I have involved my son in good work that gives strength to others, Cindy’s daughter became involved in the Sisters Fight Club. I am sad to report that about a year after the Christmas party, Cindy lost her battle. The club members have missed her dearly, and I have missed her, too. By passing her legacy on to her daughter who now runs the group, Sister Fight Club has continued to provide support to women in the area. Let’s hope we can all follow Cindy’s example, spreading faith, hope and love to those around us, even when we need that support ourselves, and try to pass the torch on to others we hold dear.