ST. PAUL, MN (June 26, 2010) – For six months at ten o’clock every night, Samuel Alvarado would go to the home of a fellow Dearborn Covenant Church member who was dying of ALS (Lou Gehrig’s Disease) to lift the man from his wheelchair and help him prepare for bed.
“I loved being with him,” said Alvarado during an interview earlier this week. “I was just able to share some brotherly kindness. It certainly wasn’t a chore.”
During a special ceremony today, Alvarado received the T.W. Anderson Award, which is presented at each year’s Annual Meeting and honors laypersons who evidence lives of commitment and dedication to Christ and the church. The award is named for the only lay president of the Covenant. Click here for video coverage.
Alvarado was honored for ministry within his church, around the community, and internationally.
Within his church, Alvarado has taught Sunday school and served as superintendent, led small groups, organized numerous events, provided translation on many mission trips to Mexico, and participated in the “Men with Tools” ministry. Most recently, he has been involved in ministries that reach out to the burgeoning Muslim population in the city.
One of the ministries is Dearborn Covenant’s English as Second Language outreach to the community, but especially to Muslim residents. The Bible is used as the primary text.
“The people who come, especially the Muslims, expect you to talk about God because they are coming to your church,” Alvarado said.
Comments by people submitted on nomination forms help highlight the breadth of Alvarado’s ministry:
- “I remember Sam spending several hours scrubbing a stained carpet in our church the night before the funeral of our church librarian.”
- “Sam is very good at doing things quietly behind the scenes. Whether it is the dirty carpet in the church parlor, the shut-ins’ un-shoveled walks, or the need for burgers for the church picnic, Sam quietly steps up to the plate and makes things happen.”
Great Lakes Conference Superintendent Dick Lucco said, “In countless conversations over the years, Sam has never failed to reflect on his own faith nor has he failed to ask me how I am doing in my walk with Christ. I am always encouraged when I spend time with Sam.”
Alvarado is married to his wife, Cynthia, and has five children.