A Cause Far Greater than Themselves

A few weeks ago, I wrote about my participation in the Sue Marie and Bill Turner Servant Leadership Award project that the Pastoral Institute came to NPACE for help with. I was tasked with writing the narration for the video that was shown at the awards banquet on October 21st. Now that the video has been completed and the Schusters have received their award, I though I’d share what I wrote:

Ruth and Marvin Schuster

What is “Servant Leadership?” Is it loving your neighbor as yourself? Is it serving the needy? The downtrodden? The lost and broken? Is it giving your life to a cause far greater than yourself?

In two-thousand twelve, the Pastoral Institute established an award honoring Sue Marie and Bill Turner, a couple embodying the true essence of servant leadership. The Turners loved their community, actively working to improve it through their service to the Bradley-Turner Foundation and their founding of the Pastoral Institute forty years ago.

The two-thousand fourteen recipients of The Sue Marie and Bill Turner Servant Leadership Award exemplify this same caring and loving commitment to the broken and needy in their community. Ruth and Marvin Schuster have spent their 56 years of marriage living out the heart of servant leadership. They feel a special draw to serving the homeless and helpless here at home, using their time, talents, gifts, and service to lift the spirits of those in need.

In nineteen sixty-seven, Marvin established the family-owned business, Schuster Enterprises, Incorporated. Since then, it has grown into one of the most successful and respected franchises in the Burger King Corporation. Their legacy lives on through their son, Todd, current owner of the family business.

During this time, Ruth has helped provide physical and spiritual nourishment throughout her twenty-eight years of volunteering with Meals on Wheels—delivering food to shut-ins and those with limited mobility—while also bringing hope to the lonely through the Widow’s Ministry at Edgewood Baptist Church. The couple are strong supporters of our local United Way, Columbus State University, and the international ministries of both the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association as well as Columbia International University in Columbia, South Carolina.

The Schusters are truly living for a cause far greater than themselves: the love and care of their neighbors. Their commitment to these principles has made them excellent candidates for this year’s Sue Marie and Bill Turner Servant Leadership Award. They are an inspiration to us all.