Reception will honor ‘Miss Betty’

Published 3:00 am Wednesday, August 17, 2016

First Baptist Church of Troy will honor one of its own at the Sunday morning worship service and at a community wide reception at 2 p.m. in the church parlor.

“Miss Betty” Bateman has been the childcare director at First Baptist for 29 years and mother and grandmother to hundreds of children who have attended Mother’s Day Out at First Baptist Church over the many years.

Geoffrey Spann, FBC minister of education and administration, said the church family wanted to honor Bateman for her service to the church and to the community with a public reception.

Sign up for our daily email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

Spann said there is no way to know how many lives have been positively affected by their association with Bateman, as a child or parent or as a friend.

“We wanted to give members of the community an opportunity to speak to Betty and let her know what her service and caring have meant to them personally, to the church membership and to the community as a whole,” Spann said. “Betty has been recognized many times by the community. She was honored as Woman of the Year by the Chamber of Commerce. She was recognized as a Community Hero and an Unsung Hero.

“Many articles have been published in local newspapers about her and how she has impacted to lives of so many children. And we also wanted to honor her at First Baptist.”

Spann said Sunday will be a time for the community to let Bateman know, in a personal way, that her service has been appreciated and her loving and caring spirit has made a difference in the lives of all she has touched.

Bateman was quoted as saying that her role at First Baptist was more than childcare director.

“I’m like a grandmother,” Bateman said. “I’m a security blanket for these children. I have a soft spot in my heart for every one of them.”

And, Spann said that those children, many of whom are now young adults, some with children of their own, surely have a soft spot in their hearts for her.

The reception for “Miss Betty” will be from 2 until 4 p.m. in the parlor of First Baptist Church in Troy.

All of Miss Betty’s “children” are invited.