Angels Among Us Awards

  • Posted on December 6, 2009 at 11:09 pm

I’m not well-versed in the choirs of Angels nor the hierarchy in which they exist; however, I am familiar with one kind of Angel — the Earth Angel.  I don’t know if many of you are aware that we have some pretty tough Earth Angels living among us right here in the Fargo-Moorhead area.  I would like to recognize some of these  this year with "Angels Among Us" awards in recognition of the many things they do that seemingly go unnoticed.

"Angels Among Us" – Alabama 

I was walking home from school on a cold winter’s day
Took a shortcut through the woods and I lost my way
It was getting late and I was scared and alone
Then a kind old man took my hand and led me home
Mama couldn’t see him, but he was standing there
But I knew in my heart, he was the answer to my prayers

Angels for the Children:  Barry Nelson, Executive Director – Metro Youth Partnership and those who work for and with him.  This is an organization where children are the heart and soul.  They have many partners in the area that work tirelessly for the youth of our region.  They try their best to make every child an active and vibrant part of our community through the Youth Summit, funding for activities fees for youth and so much more.  Thank you to Barry and his staff for creating such a wonderful and necessary organization in our community.  The Metro Youth Partnership began in 1995 as the Moorhead Healthy Community Initiative and has expanded to what it is today.

Oh I believe there are angels among us
Sent down to us from somewhere up above
They come to you and me in our darkest hours
To show us how to live
To teach us how to give
To guide us with a light of love

MPR Radio photo from their website

Many Angels Working Together Award:

This spring was a difficult time for many people in the region and without the relentless work of the agencies, from the National Guard to the local law enforcement, working together the Flood of 2009 would not have been won.  These men and women sacrificed their families, their friends and their time to work tirelessly for the protection of all.  Thank you.

When life dealt troubled times and had me down on my knees
There’s always been someone there to come along and comfort me
A kind word from a stranger to lend a helping hand
A phone call from a friend just to say I understand
Ain’t it kind of funny at the dark end of the road
Someone lights the way with just a single ray of hope

The Angels of Mercy:

Bessie Askew (Shelter Director) of Churches United for the Homeless.  I don’t know for certain how long Bessie has worked at Churches United, but what I do know is that her heart is bigger than most.  In conversations I have had with her, few as they have been, her light of love for humanity shines through as a beacon of hope for many.  Bessie works a lot with the unseen homeless or the least served of the homeless population in Fargo — the single men with no children.  Thank you Bessie for all that you do at Churches United for the Homeless.

The Shelter Employees of the YWCA Women’s Shelter:  The employees at the YWCA Shelter experience first hand the shattered and broken lives of women and children leaving domestic violence behind for a better future.  For this we should be grateful as a community.  The YWCA, consistently full to – or above – capacity, is a welcoming place and safe haven for so many women and children.  All of the employees deserve recognition by name, but there are so many of them working in tandem with their volunteers and board it would take the space of this entire blog.  Thank you to all of you for providing peace and comfort for all you serve.

Oh I believe there are angels among us
Sent down to us from somewhere up above
They come to you and me in our darkest hours
To show us how to live
To teach us how to give
To guide us with a light of love

The Angels of Hope: When one hears the name "Salvation Army" the first thing that comes to mind — usually — is the bell ringers with the red kettle.  There’s one person I have worked with, here and there, at the Salvation Army that always stands out in my mind – Tai Leathers, Director of Family Services.  Tai brings a unique perspective to her department and is one of the most humble people that I have met.  She is always willing to help in whatever way she can.  She takes her job very seriously and always wants the best outcome for the individual.  Tai, and all the staff at the Salvation Army, are Angels of Hope in our community.  They are definitely in service to all and a light in the darkness when it seems there’s no hope.  Special recognition needs to be given to the Salvation Army also for their efforts during the flood, being there for victims of fires and other disasters.  The Salvation Army isn’t just working for the homeless and hungry; they work tirelessly for humanity.  Thank you to the Salvation Army.


They wear so many faces
Show up in the strangest places
Grace us with thier mercy
In our time of need

The Angels in Unawares: "Be not forgetful to entertain strangers: for thereby some have entertained angels unawares". Hebrews 13:2  First and foremost the Angel in Unawares individual award goes to Sara Lepp, Director of First Link’s Volunteer Center.  I don’t think that many people have a significant understanding of everything this woman does.  She is phenomenal in her position.  Sara was instrumental in the flood fight of 2009 and sacrificed more than just time.  Sara was command central in some regards and in being in that position sacrificed her heart and soul to ensure that all was well on the homefront.  Thank you Sara Lepp for your tireless effort during those dark days. 

Under Sara’s supervision is a literal army of people working under the radar in Fargo-Moorhead.  There are so many of them they are literally in unawares to the rest of the community.  Trust me, they’re there — even if you don’t know who they are.  They work in every capacity imaginable for many, many different organizations and agencies.  When disaster hits they come out of the woodwork from every nook and crany of the region ready to fight the good fight — whatever it might be.  When all is well in the disaster arena they work quietly — undetected in most cases — as lights of love and humanity for all.  Thank you to the First Link Volunteers for all that you do; seen and unseen.

Oh I believe there are angels among us
Sent down to us from somewhere up above
They come to you and me in our darkest hours
To show us how to live
To teach us how to give
To guide us with a light of love

To guide us with a light of love.

Everyone of us in one capacity or another has experienced these angels.  The ones listed here are the ones that I know — although they are only a few among many.  Since I am not the know all and be all of the region:  Do you have someone who should be recognized for their work in the community?  Anyone that deserves an angel award? 

2 Comments on Angels Among Us Awards

  1. Profile photo of Ms. C Ms. C says:

    PW ~ Yep…I know someone…you.

    James Barrie said, “Those who bring sunshine into the lives of others cannot keep it from themselves.”

    Lovely blog. I will make sure that Sara sees it.


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  2. Abra La Mente says:

    First off, PW, I agree with madamgovnr–you are one of those angels among us. It is obvious in the profession you’ve chosen, and I’ve seen it in the blogs you’ve chosen to write, this one just one among many that have pulled at the heart strings and opened eyes to the vast amount of community happenings that often go unnoticed and underappreciated! Thank you for spotlighting these angels–the ones we may not see, but are ALWAYS there!! Peace to you!

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