Older Adult Ministry Award Winners Chosen

Oct 10, 2011, 13:10 ET from Flushing House

Two Long Island Grandmothers Honored For Helping Seniors

FLUSHING, N.Y., Oct. 10, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- United Adult Ministries, the parent company of Flushing House, will honor two grandmothers with the Older Adult Ministry Award, during their annual gala fundraising dinner on Thursday, November 3, 2011. The two are Francis J. Hicks, a volunteer at Central Presbyterian Church of Huntington (nominated by Rev. R. David Aldridge), and Maria Hottinger, Deacon of First Presbyterian Church of Greenlawn (nominated by Rev. Frederick H. Woodward). The two will be honored for all the good works they do for seniors.

(Photo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20111010/DC83443-a )
(Photo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20111010/DC83443-b )

Francis J. Hicks was born and raised in Oyster Bay, NY. Frani has a very tight-knit family that enjoys huge and frequent reunions. Frani married Charlie Hicks and they raised two girls in Huntington. Charlie passed away in 1984, but Frani has three granddaughters, one grandson, and two great grandchildren to keep her busy.

Frani joined Central Presbyterian Church of Huntington in 1970, and served as Deacon for many terms, including serving as vice chair and then chair of the Deacons. She has served on the Women's Christian Council as the Naomi Circle Leader, since 1986, and as president and moderator. She is also active with Presbyterian Women of the Presbytery of Long Island, and serves as their historian and chair of arrangements, retreats and events.

In the late 1990's, Frani offered to serve as office help at the church on Wednesdays, and has been there nearly every Wednesday since. Here she is the church receptionist, helping staff with mailings and other duties. She also makes phone calls throughout the week to check on the many church seniors who are home-bound. She schedules regular visits to seniors by their Pastor, Elder and Deacon, to serve Communion in each senior's home. She also keeps in close touch with elderly members who need that extra TLC.

Frani is a dear friend to many of Central's members. She serves on the church's growth committee, assisting with greeting the arriving worshipers on Sunday mornings. She frequently joins with her Pastor when he makes personal visits to their home-bound seniors, and has a gift for sharing the presence and love of God, with people who need it the most.

Maria Hottinger was born in Wehr, Germany, in 1935, and later raised as a Swiss citizen. Maria came to the U.S. in 1955 where she raised four children. Though now widowed, Maria is also a proud grandmother of nine, as well as a great-grandmother of four.

In addition to parenting, Maria worked for the Hazeltine Corporation in Greenlawn, NY. But her real passion is always her church. Maria has held membership in two Huntington, NY area Presbyterian churches, where she served on various committees and boards. At First Presbyterian Church of Northport, she served on their Pastor Nominating Committee. But it was at First Presbyterian Church of Greenlawn, that Maria found her calling as an ordained Deacon. She serves that board as its Treasurer, runs the food pantry, and has a special passion for older adults.

Maria serves as a volunteer both at the Carillon Nursing and Rehabilitation Center and Hands On Huntington, a program offering help to seniors, including healthcare monitoring and screening, home maintenance, transportation and other services for seniors who wish to stay in their homes. First as a volunteer and then as a deacon, Maria quickly recognized that Carillon Center was a natural mission field for First Presbyterian of Greenlawn. Not only is Carillon just two miles from her church, but many church members and area residents transition there after hospitalization at nearby Huntington Hospital.

About five years ago, Maria helped the Deacon board 'catch a vision.' How encouraging it would be, Maria suggested, if the Carillon Center seniors were incorporated into the church's Giving Tree Program. Working with the Carillion staff, Maria received names of about twenty residents who had no family in the area. In addition to making frequent visits to see those residents, she and other deacons shop for them at Christmas. She also has a greeting card ministry to the residents, with whom she celebrates special holidays and birthdays.

Maria continues her service to older adults despite her own long struggle with cancer. She has come to recognize that, it is in caring for others, and especially older adults, that she finds alleviation from the burden of her own health situation.

The gala fundraising dinner will be held on November 3, 2011, at Westbury Manor, Westbury, Long Island, and begins at 6:00 p.m. Those interested in attending should R.S.V.P. by October 24, 2011 by sending their name and address, along with a $75 check payable to United Adult Ministries, to Robert F. Salant, director of community relations, Flushing House, 38-20 Bowne Street, Flushing, NY 11354. For more information, please call 347-532-3025 or send an email to rsalant@uam.org.

Built in 1974, Flushing House is a not-for-profit retirement residence, and was one of the first to offer older adults independent living with supportive services on-premises. All proceeds support a special endowment fund, which allows Flushing House to remain affordable for many of the seniors who live there. Please go to www.flushinghouse.com for more information.

United Adult Ministries (UAM) is an older adult ministry of The Presbytery of New York City, The Presbytery of Long Island, and The Regional Synod of New York, The Reformed Church In America. UAM sponsors Flushing House, along with United Home Services and United Lifeline, all not-for-profit organizations. The UAM mission: United Adult Ministries offers older adults hope, through expanding opportunities and practical services, to live confidently in today's world.

SOURCE Flushing House