Melissa was raised in a Christian home and baptized as an infant. After a painful divorce and a serious health scare, she began attending Divorce Care at Oak Pointe where she met a group of people that would end up forming a Life Group and forging eternal friendships. Dennis Haggerty was one of them. During that time, she had a spiritual reawakening and was baptized at Oak Pointe in 2013.
Melissa has always had a heart for non-profits and jumped right in when Oak Pointe committed itself to Life Remodeled and Cody High School (she even worked for Life Remodeled for a time). A fun fact: Melissa had to “urge” Dennis Haggerty to get involved with Cody High School! In 2014, she responded with enthusiasm to the new mentoring program at Cody High School. The first event was like speed dating where students and mentors spent just five minutes getting to know each other before moving on to another. The following week, Melissa learned that Brittany Agee had picked her to be her mentor.
At first, Brittany was very cautious, wondering why Melissa would invest in her. And though Melissa could only provide her time and talent, trust was built and Melissa became one of the only constants in Brittany’s life. From Brittany’s senior year of high school, Cody graduation, college graduation, and for the past nine years, Melissa has been there for Brittany. Today, Brittany is a college graduate, financially independent, and a social worker for the State of Michigan who is enthusiastic about helping others through her profession.
Melissa says “We are called by Jesus to go – and build relationships. The odds are SO stacked against the Cody students, but what we can offer is love, respect, compassion, time, and guidance. Everyone at Oak Pointe can provide that.”
Note that Melissa & Brittany’s story was described in Mike Tenbusch’s 2016 book The Jonathan Effect. We will learn more details about Brittany’s life next month.