Partners in Health and Wholeness (PHW), an initiative of the North Carolina Council of Churches, is designed to bridge issues of faith, health, and justice. We partner with faith communities to provide the necessary tools for healthy, whole, and abundant living. Through these spotlights, we will be sharing an overview of the programs and initiatives of some of our partner congregations doing great work. For more information on how to join the Collaborative, visit healthandwholeness.org.
RALEIGH, NC — Real Life Ministries (RLM) truly lives up to their name through promoting a practical approach to health that is accessible to everyone. Mr. Depris Price – health lead at RLM – highlighted this approach through describing the incorporation of Zumba practice into weekly praise and worship. Mr. Price said the mini-zumba classes were something the pastor just did on a whim. A lot of people felt a little silly doing it on their own, but with everyone involved it’s a fun way to get active and moving.
The health program at Real Life Ministries has been promoting wellness for 6 years by connecting with the community in fun and interactive ways. Even though Zumba is already incorporated into worship, the ministry also hosts pop-up classes at varying spaces in an effort to reach the entire community. RLM also hosts a two month fitness boot camp during the summer that consists of routines led by fitness trainers focusing on hydration and physical activity. Depris even discussed a bowling tournament they are hosting to engage with the community in a lively and fun way: “The bowling tournament is our way of connecting with other churches. Sometimes the only way we connect and fellowship is through worship services, so this is another way we can get together, have fun, and be active. That’s our main priority–being active. Do whatever you want to do, but be active while you’re doing it and have fun.”
The health ministry at RLM also partners with their community service outreach ministry to host joint health and wellness community service initiatives. One example of this is through their work with local homeless shelters. The ministry will cater a substantial, healthy meal, while also taking time to just talk and have a time of fellowship together. They also partner with the Ronald McDonald House to spend time with some of the kids and bring gifts like puzzles as a fun way to keep them mentally engaged.
Although RLM has many robust initiatives focusing on physical wellness, they emphasize that health wholeness cannot be reached without balancing physical health with mental reflection: “One of the leaders in our own faith community has also struggled with physical fitness. He has played a big role in developing our health and wellness team and has been a big advocate for the program. He also always reminds us that it’s easy to let work takeover and forget to take care of yourself, which is why he really stresses work-life-balance and the importance of taking time out for yourself.” This philosophy truly embodies “real life” through encouraging practical approaches that can fit everyone’s daily routines. Depris also explained that the sermons are very practical by using scripture to relate to the congregation and highlight how everyone can maintain a healthy, abundant life.
We are grateful and humbled to partner with Real Life Ministries as they continue to build and embody a truly healthy community. If you would like to contact Real Life Ministries and learn more about their work, please reach out to Depris Price at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you to Mr. Depris Price and everyone at Real Life Ministries for all of your hard work!