Spring Newsletter 2019

It takes a community!

Our 2019 program is in full swing with our key Spring events now behind us. Take a look inside to see the impact of our Working Hands project (Woody’s House) and Clothing & Furniture Giveaways (Purcellville and Leesburg).  I’m sure you’ve heard the phrase: ‘it takes a village.’ In our case, ‘it takes a community.’ Hundreds of volunteers are needed to pull off both events and our target was to raise around $15,000 to fund all our activities. Thank you if you were able to pray, give or volunteer!

For all those who helped on the day, one of our core values was very evident – Community is our front line. More importantly, 60 people committed their lives to Christ and 156 Bibles were distributed. Without doubt, our primary core value was also on display - Jesus is foremost. The Apostle John tells of the amazing impact that one woman had on her town, simply because she testified about Jesus. As we continue to share the love of Christ throughout the coming year, let’s pray for an amazing impact on our own community – to the glory of God. Blessings, Paul Smith Executive Director, Tree of Life Ministries




Working Hands and Clothing & Furniture Giveaway (Purcellville and Leesburg) Highlights:


618 partners served and heard the gospel

60 committed their lives to Christ

224 volunteers engaged

156 Bibles distributed

500 breakfast sandwiches consumed


Working Hands Project at Woody’s House

37 volunteers 1 Home Transformed!



VOLUNTEER SPOTLIGHT: Welcome to our new team members!

Jim Heigl - Food Branch Director-Leesburg

After retiring from 14 years at Prison Fellowship Ministries, I prayed that the Lord would show me what to do next. I had always worked in a professional environment, but after much prayer and studying the life of Francis of Assisi,
I knew the Lord wanted me to help those in need. After re-reading Matthew 25:35,36 I clearly understood what he was directing me to do.

That led me to TOL and specifically the Food Branch where I could not only help with practically needs, but I could also minister to them face-to-face, developing relationships which enable me to share my testimony and the Gospel.


Tuesday nights at the Leesburg Community Kitchen (now hosted by Marilyn, my wife and ministry partner) are a highlight of my week. I’m confident that when we began food deliveries in the Leesburg area in April that will be equally as meaningful to me. I’m eager to not only serve our partners, but to draw more volunteers into this meaningful opportunity in Leesburg. Please join us as we reach out to our community, serving Christ as we serve others.

Upcoming Events


Volunteer Introduction Program (VIP)

Date: Saturday, May 18th

Time: 9:00am - 10:00am


Volunteer Introduction Program (VIP)

Date: Wednesday, June 5th

Time: 7:00pm - 8:00pm

Location: Leesburg




Community Kitchen - Free Dinner

Date: Every Thursday

Time: 5:30pm - 6:30pm


Free English Classes (ESOL)

Date: Every Thursday

Time: 6:30pm-8:30pm




Evening for Special Needs Adult

Date: Friday, May 17th

Time: 6:00pm-8:30pm


Community Kitchen - Free Dinner

Date: Every Tuesday

Time: 6:00pm-7:00pm


Free English Classes (ESOL)

Date: Every Tuesday

Time: 7:00pm-8:30pm




Crowns of Glory

Date: Sunday, May 19th

Time: 2:00pm - 3:00pm


Meal of Blessing

Date: Sunday, May 26th

Time: 6:00pm - 7:00pm



Our Tree of Life Academy is extended volunteer training.  Our next Academy
will be held in June at the Purcellville
Tree of Life Center.


Recent graduates include:



April 2019:

Brenda Zavaleta

Sue Civiletto

Inge Kassabian

Brianna Kelly

Sarah Fowler

Jennifer Del Grande

Margaret Irons

Dawn Marie


February 2019:

Caroline King

Isabel Mayer

Ruth Smale

Charlene Lane

Karin Kowalski

Rick Meyer

Karen Meyer

Jane Dickerson

Cindy Kirk

Mary Hess

Carla Joy

Patrice Smith

Mark Smith

Jim Heigl

Marilyn Heigl

Olivia Sanchez





Jennifer Del Grande - Database Administrator

Like many people in Purcellville, I had heard of Tree of Life and their food pantry, but it wasn’t until I went to the VIP (Volunteer Introduction Program) that I learned how many amazing things they do for our community.  Being a stay-at-home mom to school-aged children, I was in a unique position to offer help during the day to TOL’s regular operations. In the fall that allowed me to begin providing administrative/data entry support once a week to the Leesburg and Purcellville regions.  My family has also volunteered at the annual Christmas for Others event, and I have served with the St Peter’s women’s group the Thursday community meal. We have been able to see first-hand how much “comfort and joy” TOL brings to its partners.

Leesburg Food Delivery Ministry


There will never cease to be poor in the land. Therefore, I command you, “You shall open wide your hand to your brother,
to the needy, and to the poor in your land.” Deuteronomy 15:11

We are excited about Tree of Life Leesburg beginning a food delivery ministry this spring. As we initiate this ambitious undertaking through prayer and planning, we are looking for volunteers to help in a couple of key areas. First, on the preparation side, we seek food donations, pantry stocking volunteers, and food packing volunteers for our partners at our pantry headquarters in Purcellville. Second, we desire delivery teams who will deliver boxes of food to our partners in Leesburg and begin relationships with them. We provide specific training in each of these areas. Please attend one of our Volunteer Introduction Programs, either in Purcellville on May 18th from 9-10 am or in Leesburg on June 5th from 7-8 pm. To attend please RSVP by clicking HERE .


What a great opportunity to be the hands of Jesus to those in need by providing physically with food and spiritually with the gospel!


Leadership Team Conference

On a bright winter day, February 9th, 28 members of Tree of Life’s *leadership team gathered at Tree of Life Center in Leesburg for a time of spiritual fellowship and leadership growth.  The event began with a rousing devotional by Tim Giannosa, pastor
of Leesburg Community Church.  Executive Director Paul Smith, walked the team through a review of the accomplishments of 2018 and goals for 2019.  One exciting prospect was the vision to buy a 7 acre property west of Purcellville, and develop affordable housing
 for senior citizens and adults who have special needs challenges.  The group then was blessed to hear the personal testimonies of Isabel Mayer, Regional Director for Leesburg, Brian McMullen, Food Director for Purcellville, and Gil Paist, our new Chief Program Officer.  Wayne Ruckman, ToL Chief Operating Officer,  and Dell Nunaley, Regional Director of the Purcellville branch, led the group in exercises on effective communication and ministry team leadership.

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Tree of Life Center

210 N. 21st  Street, Unit D Purcellville, VA 20132

Operation Hours:
Monday - Friday:  9AM-2PM

Tree of Life Center

940A Edwards Ferry Road, NE Leesburg, VA 20176

Operation Hours:

 Monday-Friday:  9AM-3PM







Tree of Life Center

210 N. 21st  Street, Unit D Purcellville, VA 20132

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