River Road Congregation Celebrate the start of their “Pledge for Today Strengthen Our Tomorrow” Combined Campaign


For Immediate Release
January 11, 2015

Bethesda, MD – With anticipation and excitement, River Road Congregation, located on River Road and Whittier Blvd., officially kicked off its Pledge for Today Strengthen Our Tomorrow Combined Campaign in a joint service on Sunday. Over three hundred members and friends enjoyed an uplifting sermon, music, and historical video, followed by a luncheon. Reverend Nancy McDonald Ladd along with Reverend Bill Murry delivered a combined sermon sharing the past and present and the importance of continuing the good work of River Road.

Mel Kalagian, Campaign Director, Susan Messina & Jeanne Deshazo, Campaign Co-Chairs

Rev. McDonald Ladd laid out the need to maintain this wonderful building and by doing so, honor those who came before us. Congregations grow when we do what we do with excellence and gentleness. And there’s nothing jazzy about that. No big secret. No magic solution. Just that. And that’s what we’re about right now “ at this juncture in our life together. Excellence in the way we do community, in the way we weave a story, in the way we show up for each other. Excellence undergirded by commitment, held both inside and outside of these walls made sacred by our coming together, said Rev. Nancy McDonald Ladd.

She encouraged everyone to welcome a visit from a fellow member of the congregation. Campaign visits are designed to share a vision and, most importantly, strengthen relationships. The highlight of the morning was when Co-Chair Jeanne DeShazo and Susan Messina shared why they support the campaign and the opportunity to strengthen relationships. I couldn’t pass up Co-Chairing this Combined Campaign for its opportunity to visit and talk with many families about the future of RRC, said Jeanne DeShazo and Susan Messina, Campaign Co-Chairs.

The Steering team reveals the amount pledged at the Kick-off

The congregation erupted in cheers when the Steering Team revealed $1,853,580 in pledges towards the campaign to raise $3.6 million. In addition, $233,262 has been pledged to the Annual Campaign. The whole days was amazing. The energy that filled the building following the sermon and the official Kick-off celebration was incredible. Members were overheard saying how surprised they were to see that we had raised half our need. Rev. Ladd’s sermon was a homerun and was received well by its members. I am so please with the support of so many that continue to make this campaign successful, said Mel Kalagian, Campaign Director with James Klote & Associates.

With offices in Falls Church, Virginia; St. Charles, Illinois; Los Angeles, California; and Toronto, Ontario, James D. Klote & Associates is the largest full-time, on-site stewardship consulting firm in North America. For additional information, please contact the firm at www.jdklote.com or (800) 360-2315.


Erin West
James D. Klote & Associates

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