Crowley Star (Crowley, Tex.), Vol. 27, No. 50, Ed. 1 Thursday, April 24, 2014 Page: 3 of 14
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Thursday, April 24, 2014 ★ Crowley Star ★ Page 3
FAITH AND ACTION
By KYP SHILLAM
As a preacher's son, Jermaine Maberry
never wanted to go into the ministry.
"I tried everything not to be a pastor," said
Maberry, pastor of Broken Vessel Ministries
in Crowley, which is celebrating the church's
fourth anniversary this week. "My father was
a Baptist pastor and my grandfather pastored
an AME church in Cleburne. Our roots go way
back in the ministry, but I never wanted to get
up there and preach."
Though growing up in the church and en-
joying the fellowship it provided, Maberry
said he wandered away from the fold. He be-
came the prodigal son of the family.
"In order to preach, some people have
to go through some things - tough things
that break them," he said. "I got into alcohol
abuse, marijuana, everything I was not sup-
posed to be a part of just so I wouldn't look
like a church kid. All I wanted was to be 'nor-
mal' and like everyone else. It took God to get
me out of that downward spiral."
Years of running came to an abrupt end.
Arrested on a DWI charge Jan. 22, 2009, Ma-
berry's heart was finally broken enough to
come home to is family and his calling.
"As soon as those cell doors slammed shut
at exactly 7:30 p.m., I said, 'Lord, whatever
you want from me, I'll do it.' It was a Thursday,
and I kept my promise. I've not taken a drink
or smoke since then. I've never looked back."
Maberry began his journey on the narrow
road by attending a Bible study his mother was
leading in her house. Within a few months, the
study outgrew the house and began meeting
in a church in south Fort Worth before find-
ing a permanent home at 118 S. Texas Street in
Crowley. Broken Vessel Ministries was born.
"My mom was the pastor, but as her health
got bad, I started to pick up duties and am now
the pastor," said Maberry, who gives much of
the credit for the church's growth to wife, Felita.
"She's my First Lady and our people follow
our leadership instead of just mine," he said,
noting Felita often takes the pulpit. "Not only
is she my biggest cheerleader, inspiration and
critic, she is a prayer warrior like no one I've
ever seen. I admire the way she goes before
the Lord in prayer. She has a very high sense
CROWLEY STAR/KYP SHILLAM
Pastor Jermaine Maberry and First Lady Felita have
confidence in their call to leadership at Broken Ves-
sel Ministries church in Crowley.
of spiritual discernment."
A pastor's daughter, Felita, like her hus-
band, never wanted to be a pastor or first lady.
"I grew up in my parents' church (Morning
Star Evangelist Ministries in Fort Worth) and
was involved in praise and worship. Singing
was my thing. I never wanted to be a preach-
er's wife," she said, smiling at the admission.
"Our own kids don't want us to be pastors."
The Maberry's have nine children ranging
from 3 to 23-years old, "a mix of his, hers and
ours," said Felita. "Eight boys and one girl,
The call, they said, is bigger than what
anyone, even their own children, think.
"When my old friends find out I'm a pas-
tor, they're shocked," said Maberry, seeing
the blessing of the broken road. His now bro-
ken friends think they're seeking Maberry's
advice, but he knows they are truly seeking
Jesus and God's forgiveness.
"I do a lot of counseling, and my share of
weddings too," he said.
Though he wears mostly suits on Sunday,
Maberry's casual attire and humble attitude the
other six days of the week give him an accessi-
DEER CREEK ELEMENTARY
Wandoo encourages reading
By KYP SHILLAM
The premise of Wandoo Planet is simple
To get kids to read, they must have books
they are interested in.
Students at Deer Creek Elementary did
just that as they discovered their interests
and found books to read on those subjects, all
while saving the Wandoo forest.
"Twelve classes came through in second
through fourth grades," said Lindsay Hill of
Evaced Solutions, the company beta test-
ing the Wandoo Planet platform last week in
Crowley. "All 200-250 kiddos were able to set
up an account and access it for the beta test."
Each student received a tree in the cyber
forest. The students then play games to find
their interests. Those interests bring up book
recommendations. When a book is read, the
students earn a leaf on their tree. As they read
more and even recommend a book they've
read on the site, more branches and leaves
appear to build a healthy forest.
"The kids thought it was really cool. They
were instantly engaged in the software and
the gaming aspect of it," said CISD Library
Director Jan Hodge, who was instrumental
in bringing the Wandoo beta test to Crowley
ISD. "They were really excited to find books
that matched their interests."
In the Wandoo forest, Hill said the stu-
dents were part of the world's first kid-pow-
ered interest genome project.
"The feedback we got on the site was in-
credibly exiting," said Hill of the Deer Creek
test. "The kids loved Winston the owl and the
story of Wandoo Planet really gave context
to what we were trying to do. The kids really
wanted to help the forest grow."
CROWLEY STAR/SUBMITTED PHOTO
Deer Creek elementary students pose with Winston
the owl, who lives in the forest of Wandoo Planet, a
place where kids "discover and mine their interests."
And while the Wandoo forest grows, so
does a student's reading proficiency and their
appetite for more books on the topics that
spark their imagination.
"With technology and social media, it's im-
portant to create instant access to what people
want and what excites them," Hodge said.
Hill said Evaced Solutions plans to fully
launch the website and Apple product-based
app in late spring. As a teacher for 14 years,
she said she is proud that Wandoo will have
no advertising and will encourage kids to read
more while "mining their interests."
Looking forward to the official launch of
Wandoo Planet, Hodge said she is honored
that Deer Creek was chosen as one of only two
beta testing sites in Texas. Curtis Elementary
in Weatherford also tested the software.
"I'm also looking into ways to share Wandoo
Planet with the other CISD schools," Hodge said.
NORTH CROWLEY CHOIR
The North Crowley choir
received straight 1st Division
Sweepstakes ratings for all three
competition choirs last week at
UIL competition, said NCHS
choir director Robyn Hollimon.
"Our varsity mens, womens
and mixed choirs all earned top
honors. With these results we
reached the 40th UIL Sweep-
stakes Award for NCHS choirs
since I came here in the fall of
2000," said Hollimon.
Because of its legacy of
excellence, the NCHS varsity
mixed choir will present the
first annual 30-minute Grand
Champion Honors concert
during the awards ceremony
of the invitational Festival Di
Voce at Dallas Baptist Uni-
versity Tuesday, April 29.
"The concert will be at-
tended by close to 1,000 festival
participants and their direc-
tors, sponsors and families, and
NCHS parents as well as staff
and students from Dallas Bap-
tist University," said Hollimon,
noting NCHS earned the honor
after winning Grand Champion
Choir at the festival in 2013.
North Crowley junior Ty-
ler Grigsby has been awarded
a full scholarship to the Kan-
sas State University Summer
"He is the sixth NCHS choir
member in the past three years
to be awarded a full scholar-
ship, valued at $1,500," said
Hollimon. "Forty sophomores
and juniors from across the
United States are chosen each
year to attend this week-long
leadership and choral training
camp. Students are selected
mainly by vocal ability and
must be approved to audition
by their choral director."
With hundreds of audi-
tions sent in this year, Holli-
mon said Grigsby's skill and
hard work are showing. He
joins NCHS seniors Elijah
Clark, Zachary Willis and Sam
Wilson in earning the honor.
Grigsby is also an All-State
Choir member this year.
bility many men in his position don't extend. sus did 2000 years ago to show His disciples
"I call or text each of the men in the church "He was not only God, but the servant of all.
weekly to check on them and see if there's That's what we are. Our members have our
anything I can do for them. As a pastor, I am phone numbers. They can call us. The door to
to serve them, not the other way around," he this church is open whenever you see my car
said, adding he will be washing feet just as Je- here. Come on in. The door is not locked.”
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Shillam, Kyp. Crowley Star (Crowley, Tex.), Vol. 27, No. 50, Ed. 1 Thursday, April 24, 2014, newspaper, April 24, 2014; Burleson, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth809242/m1/3/: accessed December 15, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Burleson Public Library.