Everyday Hero: Rev. Sam Spruill

By Rev. V. Lonnie Peek, Jr.
Published On: Mar 07 2014 01:42:04 PM EST
Updated On: Mar 08 2014 09:07:07 AM EST

ClickOnDetroit.com columnist Rev. Lonnie Peek, Jr. shows Local 4 News Today how one local man is making a difference in the lives of convicts.

DETROIT -

Making A Difference: Every Day Hero Rev. Sam Spruill

Nestled over on the west side, just off of Tireman on Beechwood, is Helping Operations for People Empowerment or "HOPE." This non profit's CEO is Rev. Sam Spruill. The organization is the community outreach arm of Tabernacle Missionary Baptist Church and is located in the old Tabernacle Church building. It is involved in educational, social and community development programs.

The main focus, of one of HOPE's Learning Centers, is a mentoring and readjustment program for returning citizens. Rev. Spruill has been involved with prison re-entry for 21 years. For 17 years he served as the volunteer Chaplin for the Mound Road Prison. He cites this is his "calling" and he has dedicated his life to this area of service. He says, "There will always be a need for this ministry as long a one person is in prison." He further states that many folks have a difficult time making the adjustment back into life. There has been strain on their families and society continues to move while they are incarcerated. He remembered several years ago, this one man saw a cell phone and said, "What is this"?

Some of the supportive services that HOPE offers are: computer training through its computer lab, resume writing and a clothes closet. But its main cornerstone is "The Bakery." Daily it churns out all types of goodies for more than 30 clients. All of their goods are made from scratch. Some folks try to walk in and buy something due to them hearing about the quality of the products but they have to tell them there is nothing sitting on the shelf. You have to call and place an order so it can be prepared fresh. They train their folks in the art of baking and raise funds to support their operation. Other support comes from grants and Tabernacle Church.

The computer lab is open to the community and every day homeless folks come in for meals. Rev. Spruill says, "The church provides the good news, HOPE provides the good deeds." They also provide a food pantry for Sampson School in Detroit, which is just around the corner. He says many of our children and families have challenges getting food on the table. This way it's available, no questions asked.

Regarding the quality of their baked goods, Bakery Manager Cynthia Carter states, "One day we noticed that we had one pie left and I asked a member of the church, would they like to have a slice of pie. He said one slice of your pie won't get it, I want the whole pie."

Rev. Spruill states he loves to come to work every day and touch those who need to be touched. Rev. Sam Spruill is an Everyday Hero: Making A Difference. Phone contact 313-897-5503.

On a daily basis in spite of ones life's struggles and challenges, there are some people who reach out and make a positive impact on the lives' of others.
That is why Local 4 and a prominent local clergyman, Rev. V. Lonnie Peek, Jr. have teamed up to find those people and tell their stories.

Do you know an everyday hero in your life? Email us and tell us about them.

About Rev. Lonnie Peek, Jr.

Rev. V. Lonnie Peek, Jr. located in Detroit in 1975. After teaching 2 years in DPS, he went to WSU receiving a Masters of Social Work, an activist on campus he created the Association of Black Students. He is an entrepreneur and serves on such civic boards as New Detroit, Inc, Detroit Riverfront Conservancy and the Detroit Economic Growth Corporation. With extensive radio background expanding 25 years, he writes a weekly column for the Michigan Chronicle. He has been a regular on local/ national television shows dealing with political and social issues An ordained minister and seminary graduate, he serves on the executive committee and is the public relations chairman for the Council of Baptist Pastors of Detroit and Vicinity and is Assistant Pastor at Greater Christ Baptist Church.


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