There from the start (Story 49 of 50)
Updated: Feb 5
CCHO is celebrating 50 years of ministry! Throughout 2019, we will be sharing stories of the lives that have been forever changed by the work God has done through our family of ministries (CCHO, Encourage Foster Care and Encompass Christian Counseling). In story #49 of our 50 Stories for 50 Years of Ministry series, former employee and current member of one of our longest standing supporting churches, Jody Shoup, shares about her relationship with our family of ministries.
So many churches have played such a vital role in these five decades of ministry. Orrville Christian Church (OCC) was intricately involved in the earliest days here at CCHO. In fact, a family from OCC first purchased the 175-acre property from which we now operate, allowing CCHO to pay for the land over time as the ministry continued to grow. Without such commitment and generosity, we would never have seen our 50th anniversary!
OCC’s relationship with our family of ministries endures to this day, for which we are eternally grateful. Jody Shoup, the co-chair for OCC’s mission team, also is a former CCHO employee. Here’s what Jody wanted to share as she reflected on our 50th anniversary and the continued partnership between OCC and CCHO:
In June of 1990, I took a summer job with CCHO as a cottage intern. I was planning to return to my home state of Illinois in the fall but God had other plans. I ended up staying on with CCHO and worked in a number of capacities, starting as a foster care social worker for the Lorain County families and children. Then, when CCHO wanted to start a branch of foster families in the Columbus and surrounding areas, I moved to Columbus to open that office and license those families. After completing my MSW at OSU, I moved back to the Wooster office and offered individual and marriage counseling through New Beginnings (now Encompass). When my husband and I started a family in 1997, I decided to leave my job to stay home with our children.
Since then, I continue to be involved in volunteer capacities. I co-chair the mission team at Orrville Christian Church, which is a supporting church of CCHO. My ladies Bible study has also volunteered to buy and wrap Christmas gifts for the children.
CCHO will always have a special place in my heart. Not only did it bring me to Ohio (where I have lived for 29 years), but I have been a witness to many miracles and lives changing through the many avenues that CCHO offers. I love that they are open to using a variety of methods to help people heal. When I worked there, I appreciated that CCHO was so supportive of employees growing and healing since “you can’t bring someone else farther than you yourself have come.” I was able to grow emotionally and spiritually during my time there because of an encouraging work environment conducive to personal development.
May God continue to bless and use CCHO to reach children and families and to draw them closer to Jesus!