Church honors 49-year Sunday School teacher
DE SOTO—Lorraine Acre, 80, who has been teaching 2-year-olds in Sunday School for the past 49 years at First Baptist Church of De Soto, was honored during a recent evening worship service with a plaque.
Noted on the plaque was a prayer she has taught her young students. It is an expression of her desire for them: “Thank you, God, for my family. Thank you for watching over us and please help me be the kind of person you want me to be. In Jesus’ name we pray, Amen.”
Jeremy Muniz, pastor of First De Soto, was honored to present the plaque to the longtime Sunday School teacher.
“Every Southern Baptist Church needs a Mrs. Acre,” he said. “When people in De Soto, Missouri, think of Mrs. Acre, they naturally think about her amazing feat of teaching 2-year-olds for half a century. However, this is only one small aspect of her contribution to kingdom work here in De Soto.
“What most people fail to realize is that Lorraine has been one of the most ardent proponents of the Cooperative Program and missions at First De Soto. Lorraine understands the behind the scenes, for years helping needy people in our community. The Lord Jesus alone knows how many hurting souls have been encouraged by her faithful sacrifices of time and resources.
“In recent years, every time that I have found myself discouraged or dismayed, Mrs. Acre has ‘happened by’ my office to provide an encouraging word. She never fails to tell me that she loves me and prays for me. Lorraine Acre is a godly, Christian woman and she is, without question, one of my heroes of the faith.”
Acre was surprised with 15 in- and out-of-state family members. The preschool and children’s choirs, along with anyone who had ever been in her Sunday School class, sang “Jesus Loves Me.”
“The Sanctuary platform was full of children and adults,” said Mary Jo Linhorst, minister to children at the church.
Acre also enjoyed a fellowship after the service as people from the church shared stories about her. The fellowship hall was decorated in red roses, which are her favorite, and cards were made by the preschool and children’s Sunday School departments of the church. Acre said she stayed up until midnight reading the cards and could picture the individual children as she read each card.
When asked why she taught 2-year-olds, Acre replied, “I enjoyed it.” She began teaching when her son Forrest, or “Frosty,” was two years old, and she continued on from there.
She always arrived early and prepared. She also mentored the two women who are taking over the class, and she is confident that they will continue the tradition of the class being faithful to the Lord, the children, and their parents.
Acre continues to be active in Awana Cubbies (Pre K), Woman’s Missionary Union, and other ministries of the church.
Linhorst said Acre is a faithful example of living out I Corinthians 15:58 in that she does “stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves freely to the work of the Lord.”