The only way to get to know Centennial AME Zion Church is to get to know it's members so we'd like to introduce you to Mrs. Renae Gross. She has been a member of Centennial for 18 years and has many duties that include missionary president, deaconess, class leader & associate minister. Born in Jacksonville, Florida, she is an alumni of Ribult Senior High School where she says her worst teacher was Mrs. Coleman because she already knew her and her family coming up so there was no getting away with anything. The place she enjoyed visiting the most was St. Petersburg, Florida because she says it was so laid back like a retirement community but hopes to one day visit Paris, France.
She has a very loving family that include a wonderful husband, one brother, two sisters, six kids, two dogs and a slew of grandkids that affectionately call her Mema. After 26 years at Sears she is currently a volunteer at a hospital which puts her close to her childhood dream of becoming a doctor. Her favorite colors are black and red but her hair color depends on her mood as it changes from black to auburn to honey blonde. She credits her greatest accomplishment as going to college and her worst fear that she will never lose the weight that she wants to, choosing her stomach as the the part of her body that she wants to change first and wishing for good health if she was granted one wish. But don't take her lightly because she is also a mean volleyball player and enjoys bowling & playing Taboo for fun. Her most beautiful quality is that she is an excellent listener but thinks she over identifies was other people's problems too easily.
The first thing she does each morning is pray and her favorite Bible verse is Psalm 37:25 when David said "I have been young, and now am old; yet have I not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his seed begging bread." The quote she uses in her daily life is "a lesson learned is not repeated" and always believed that if she was going to be famous for anything, it would be for speaking. She would like to one day meet Oprah, would pay off her house if she came into some money, would save her purse if her house was on fire, and hopes to have a Bible if she was stranded on a desert island.
Mrs. Gross enjoys reading books by author Joyce Meyers & Ebony magazine but if she is watching a movie, she prefers a comedy and when watching television she likes The Nanny. Her favorite singer is Shirley Ceasar and thinks "I Just Want To Praise Him" is the most beautiful song that she's ever heard. Her most delicious dish is macaroni & cheese and she just loves to drink Coca-Cola but can't stand liver. She has a birthday coming up on July 22nd so maybe someone will take her to her favorite restaurant, Red Lobster. Even though she really wants a car, she says that the nicest thing someone has ever given her was a hug when she was feeling down. To learn more about Mrs. Renae Gross, come meet her at Centennial or befriend her on Facebook. God bless.
When the Bible said you will be judged by your deeds, no one took that to heart like Ja'Quavis Omar Tucker. Called Qua for short, he has been an intricate part of the well being of Centennial. Not only is he a junior trustee, an usher, a member of both the junior choir and the Voices of Faith mass choir, a praise dance choreographer, and church play producer but he also is very active in the community as a volunteer police intern and student body president at Lancaster High. What is so amazing is that he is still only a teenager who's life is just beginning when he heads out this fall to college.
Being a very well mannered gentleman and intelligent individual, God had a plan for Qua and after being the guest speaker at church a few times, he has now accepted his calling to be a preacher. This past Saturday, June 26, 2010, Qua performed his trial sermon at the little white church on the side of the road in front of a packed house. The district elder and his wife were in attendance as well as many other pastors, church officials, family and friends. Qua did a very good job and we are so very proud of him and all of his great deeds and accomplishments. We wish him much success in his pastorial pursuit, college academics and in all of lifes endeavors. Preach, Qua! Preach.
We heard it over and over again, "This is not a competition, this is how we treat our men." The women of Centennial went way out of their way to make the fellas feel special. It started not to many Sundays after Mother's Day with little candy treats, flowers, cards in the mail and all kinds of gift wrapped goodies. The Saturday before Father's Day, they cooked and served breakfast to the men at the church which was very nice. But then the big day came. We had an early 9:00 am service to praise our Heavenly Father first and then the whole congregation boarded a couple of long vans to head out to who knows where.
After an hour or so ride, they tried to fool the gentlemen of Centennial by stopping at a Cracker Barrel resturant but no one fell for that. We then pulled up to a docking pier at Lake Norman where we boarded The Catawba Queen and had a great time fellowshipping. The luncheon was superb and a few members even drove the boat. We laughed and enjoyed the fresh air until we docked back at the Queens Landing where we were greeted by a steel drum band. Thank you ladies for a joyous occasion.