Recognizing an everyday need and finding a way to meet that need is truly a wonderful ministry for a church! We all know that laundry is a fact of life, and we have to deal with it…some days better than others. First Christian Church in Murray, Kentucky, has joined with other churches in their community to provide help and hospitality that happens to include doing laundry. Laundry Love is the ministry that takes place in Murray and in many other communities around the country.
Volunteers from several churches take a week to host laundry night at a local laundry establishment. Donations are gathered during the month from congregations and these gifts are translated into all the quarters needed to do laundry. The volunteers set up a table at the laundry, bringing cookies, coloring pages for children, and LOTS of quarters, usually about $200. As people come to do their laundry, a volunteer will greet them and let them know they would be glad to pay for their laundry that day. If the gift is accepted, the volunteer puts the coins in the machines as needed; they do not touch laundry, preserving the person’s privacy.
Church volunteers report that so often people are amazed at the fact that someone would help them do laundry, which can cost quite a lot to do several loads. Volunteers provide laundry soap and dryer sheets as well, so there is no cost for that day for persons to do their laundry. Since Murray State University is also in their city, students frequent the location. Sometimes it isn’t that easy to have all the quarters you need in order to do your laundry, it is a huge help to have someone simply say, “May I pay for your laundry today?” No one is asked if they can afford laundry costs; no one is judged to be worthy or unworthy. It is simply a ministry of helping someone make a routine, costly job less burdensome.
Volunteers offer cookies while laundry is being done and they also offer crayons and coloring pages for children who really don’t like laundry day. Simple, effective, and much-needed, Laundry Love is a wonderful way to get acquainted in the neighborhood. For more information on how to get started in your community, contact First Christian Church in Murray. They have details and thoughtful stories to share about their experiences.