Helen Glick with Nalinh Inlatsamy
Photo by Eric Raber

Helen Glick (right) stands with Nalinh Inlatsamy, an IVEPer from Laos, in front of the Christmas tree display at MCC’s Save & Serve Thrift Shop in Millersburg, Ohio. Glick has served with MCC in a variety of roles over many years and recently retired from her role as co-manager of the thrift shop.

At the end of December, Helen Glick retired from her role as co-manager of MCC’s Save & Serve Thrift Shop in Millersburg, Ohio. This was more than just a retirement from a job of six years. Helen, along with her spouse Bruce, has spent most of her working life serving with MCC in some capacity or another.

In 1982, the Glicks embarked on their first term with MCC as co-country representatives in Bolivia.  From there, the Glicks served as co-directors for MCC Great Lakes, based in Ohio. Helen went on to take over the director role, while Bruce worked in resource generation. In 2004, they served another year with MCC in the Philippines.

Bruce and Helen have made a conscious effort to follow God’s leading in each move or change they’ve made. “Being open to the opportunities that God placed before us was the first step,” said Helen. In fact, when they first heard about the opening with MCC in Bolivia, they only had one week to decide to apply and then a mere two months before they left.

Helen first started volunteering at the MCC Connections Thrift Shop in Kidron, Ohio, upon ending her role with MCC Great Lakes. She then added a day a week at the Save & Serve Thrift Shop. When the board of Save & Serve decided they needed additional management, Helen applied and was offered the position of co-manager. “I’ve found it quite a joy to be able to be part of raising funds for MCC,” said Helen. “The work is full of challenges, and something different comes up every few minutes. It’s never boring!”

Among the many contributions that Helen has made to the thrift shop are creating high standard displays, developing organizational documents for volunteers, establishing a newsletter, planning events like a fashion show and Christmas open house and establishing relationships with young adult volunteers in IVEP (International Volunteer Exchange Program). “Save & Serve is very fortunate to have had Helen as a staff person,” said Eric Raber, co-manager. “She has a deep passion and knowledge of the work of MCC, and she is gifted in so many ways.”

In addition to her management role in Millersburg, Helen continued to volunteer one day at week at MCC Connections. She began a program selling books online and volunteered in the quilt room. She has designed over 402 comforters, five quilts and 939 rugs in what she calls her “artistic outlet.”

When asked to reflect back over her years of service with MCC, Helen remembers it as a time of growth, learning, meeting new people and travel. At the same time, a lifestyle of service comes with its sacrifices, including separation from family when living abroad. “I’ve learned that God gives grace and is sufficient for me to do what needs doing, even when it is outside my comfort zone,” she said. “Everyone needs to gain experience outside their own circle of family and friends. It was important for me to be doing something that mattered, working for the Kingdom of God.”

Helen has great respect for MCC, which is why she’s dedicated so much of her life to this ministry. “I feel that service with MCC has been one factor that gives me my identity as a citizen of the world,” said Helen. “There are wider concerns and blessings than my town or country can give. Everyone needs to take seriously Jesus’ call to serve others, and MCC is one of the best opportunities to put faith into action.”