Rising Hope Gala Raises $45,000

Rising Hope Gala Raises $45,000

Churches gather to support one of their own.

Gala organizer Sharon Emory and auctioneer Tim Dunbar brought in hefty bids.

Gala organizer Sharon Emory and auctioneer Tim Dunbar brought in hefty bids. Photograph by Ed Simmons, Jr.

“Godtastic!” declared Rennie Chen when he learned Rising Hope Mission’s 2013 Gala Oct. 5 at The Waterford in Springfield netted a $45,000 profit.

Chen is a member of Christ United Methodist Church in Fairfax Station and like many at his church is a frequent volunteer at Rising Hope which aids the homeless and needy along the Route 1 corridor.

Foremost of these Christ Church volunteers is Sharon Emory who organized the gala. For the evening’s auction she joined forces with auctioneer Tim Dunbar from Culpeper to appeal to a spirited crowd who responded with generous bids.

“At Rising Hope you will find rich and poor working side by side,” Emory told the crowd. Volunteering at the mission, she said, “is totally my passion.”

Other attendees at the dinner, auction and dance came from a slew of area churches including St. Luke’s Episcopal, Burke UMC, St. Mark’s Episcopal, Mount Zion Baptist, historic Alfred Street Baptist, Harvest Life Fellowship, Fairlington UMC, Burke UMC, Good Shepherd UMC and Cokesbury UMC. Aldersgate UMC had the most people in attendance, filling five tables.

“Thank you all for coming out and supporting Rising Hope,” said the mission’s pastor, the Rev. Keary Kincannon.

Another major contributor to the evening’s success was the Close 2 Home Band who revved up the crowd with tunes like “Mustang Sally” and “Twist and Shout.”