Thanksgiving Letter from Chief Operating Officer, Garry Hennis
Today, Garry D. Hennis, the Chief Operating Officer for Westminster Communities of Florida, shares with us his Thanksgiving letter to our team members. He reflects on the challenging times that we are experiencing, and reminds us to be thankful for all of the blessing we have in life. Read the letter below.
Dear team members,
Many times throughout our country’s history we have celebrated Thanksgiving amid challenging times. In our earliest celebration, the Pilgrims and Wampanoag Native Americans gathered together to share thanks for a bountiful harvest, because it meant they would have food for the coming winter.
This year we will celebrate Thanksgiving with gratitude in our hearts. We are thankful for our health, as well as for our family and friends — but we acknowledge that some families may have empty seats at the table.
This sacrifice by millions of Americans, to avoid gathering to minimize the spread andrisk of the deadly virus, is being made to safeguard older adults, like those we serve, with the ultimate goal that they will have future years to celebrate.
It is our hope that next year, we will be giving thanks for a vaccine and the end of this deadly pandemic.
I have been truly grateful for your continued commitment to our Mission this year, amid the biggest threat of our lifetime. You are taking many important actions for safety, knowing that each of us is our brother’s keeper: You come to work and don protective equipment. You practice social distancing at work and at home, and avoid large gatherings. You bear the enormous responsibility of saving lives each and every day.
No matter whether you are a nurse, a housekeeper, a maintenance tech, a chef or any of the many roles in our community, what you do serves our Mission and honors God.
In Deuteronomy 31, God reassures the Israelites not to fear, for He will always guide them: “Be strong and of good courage; do not fear or be in dread of them: for it is the Lord your God that goes with you; he will not fail you or forsake you.” We know that our work is guided by Him. Like God’s word, the Westminster Mission guides us to serve those in need through our service.
This season of Thanksgiving gives us opportunity to reflect on the many blessings we have in our lives. I thank each of you for being a major blessing in our residents’ lives and ask you to join me in giving thanks for our many blessings.
On behalf of the leadership team, I wish you and your family a safe and promising Thanksgiving.
Garry D. Hennis
Chief Operating Officer