St. Peter’s United Church of Christ in Ferguson is located in a quiet neighborhood lined with big oak trees and 1950 era homes. The church has a rich history, dating back to 1843, and the congregation has welcomed thousands of families and residents over the years.
One of St. Peter’s many successes over their history has been their dedication to serving the constantly changing needs of Ferguson residents. Church leadership and congregants embrace serving outside of the church walls, and their impact is present in many places. Helping in that mission has been Virginia Springmeyer, our very own Faith Community Nurse. For several years, Virginia has been a servant of health to many low-income people in the area that don’t have quality insurance, and thus access to necessary health care. Her ongoing ministry at the church health clinic (Salem Clinic) engages many people that rely on her expertise to stay healthy, and that is even more prevalent during the holiday season.
“The simple act of handing out a flyer for flu shots during community events has led to people coming during these holiday months,” said Springmeyer.
In fact, just recently, a person came to the office after receiving a flyer to get a flu shot; then, she returned to the clinic to get her blood pressure checked, asthma medications refilled and lab studies ordered. During her visit, Virginia talked with the woman and determined other resources she might need for herself and family. Ultimately, she was able to provide her with information for her son regarding the Father Support Center and St. Louis Crisis Nursery.
Virginia says, “Without our interaction, people, like this woman, would not receive the care or resources deserved. Quality healthcare is a right for all people.”
Virginia can’t confidently predict what would happen to people that count on her care if the clinic didn’t exist, but during the holidays she often thinks about the long-faces sitting in an emergency care facility.
“God has enabled me to provide the gift of health to people, and I will do everything in my power to ensure my gifts can keep them at home, around the people they love, during the holiday season… and every day.”