True Believers in Kindness, Service to Humanity

Before the Bible study began, Sylvia Wilson, right, served pastries and coffee to three of the Wilson’s guests, Christie and Carolyn Lomas (left), Woody Wilson and Jenny Dickert. As the guests departed, Silvia handed each a container of the red camellias (shown on table).

The little yard sign outside the yellow house at 110 McNulty St. says it all—Believers Fellowship. Come Join Us.

At 10:30 every Thursday morning, a handful of folks from the community arrive at the historic home in downtown Blythewood for an informal Bible study. As the Believers arrive with their Bibles and study guides in hand, they are greeted warmly and invited inside by their hosts, Sylvia and Woody Wilson. Woody, who like his mother and grandmother before him, grew up in the home, descends from ancestors who are still remembered by many in Blythewood for their genuine love of community and commitment to hospitality.

After chatting a few minutes over cookies and coffee, the group settles into sofas and chairs in the Wilsons’ living room where they open their Bibles and begin a casual but earnest conversation that is part scripture, part Blythewood history and wholly about doing good—not only in the community, but around the world. While that might seem presumptuous for this small, unassuming band of 10 or so locals, wherever their conversation wonders, it is threaded through the scriptures and teachings of the Bible with enormously good intent.

Most in the group, like retirees Carolyn and Christie Lomas, have ventured into foreign mission fields with their children during summers and family vacations, and currently distribute Bibles for the Gideons.

One regular in the group, Geri Hood, missed the last meeting while on a mission trip to Nicaragua. Woody said his and Sylvia’s primary ministry is helping those with special needs in the Blythewood area.

Another member of the group, Jenny Dickert, said she’s a ‘behind the scenes person.’ A quiet woman with a sweet smile, Dickert volunteers a couple of days a week at the Cooperative Ministries clothing bank. Dickert said she prays every day for help in knowing what to do and say to help others.

But a person doesn’t actually have to be a Believer to join the group, Woody said. “We welcome all.”

The Wilsons, who worshipped regularly at the Zion Methodist Church on Zion Church Road, began opening their home for community Bible study about a year ago. They recently started holding a Friday evening study as well.

“We feel it’s a natural way to get to know people in the community and to visit and share the Word of God,” said Sylvia.

But the Wilson’s, who are well known for their kindness and concern for others, offer more than the Word of God to their Bible study guests. They also offer a sack of groceries to anyone who stops by needing more than spiritual food.

While those attending the Thursday morning meetings represent different churches in the community, Sylvia said they are all one when they come together at the Wilson home. “They all have a similar passion—to reach out and help others,” she said.

“That,” said Woody, “is why we gather here.”

“Most people think it’s the preachers who are supposed to be out there doing God’s work and spreading His love,” said Christie Lomas, “but we all have the opportunity every day to share God’s message and do good deeds. Being kind to others, even if it’s just secretly paying for the meal that’s been ordered by the person in line behind you at the McDonald’s drive-thru window, a kindness like that can have a pleasant, lasting consequence. Small, sincere kindnesses can change people’s lives.”

Woody Wilson added, “God prepares us in different ways. He gives us what we need to carry on his work—and we are carrying it on. I feel this spiritual fellowship, this support group, is preparing us all for that journey. And we invite others in the community to join us.”

For more information, call 803-409-9602. Bible study times: Thursdays at 10:30 a.m.; Fridays at 7:30 p.m.