The Salvation Army held its annual "Doing The Most Good Luncheon" on November 15 at the Hilton Anatole. Best known for it's "red kettle" Christmas cash campaign, holiday spirit was in the air from the moment guests arrived at this event, with a 4-piece orchestra thumping our holiday tunes and that familiar bell ringing as you entered the Anatole. VIP's like Shelle Sills, Dee Dee Lee, Carmaleta Whiteley, Jocelyn White, Margot Perot, Underwriting Chair Lynn McBee, and Elaine Agather turned out early for a meet-and-greet with Grammy-award winner, Amy Grant, who was the guest speaker/performer.
1,500+ guests marched upstairs to the Khmer Ballroom and it felt like you were entering a revival as The McCampbell quintet crooned gospel tunes in perfect harmony. NBC anchor Mark Hayes welcomed guests, but it was Bernice Washington who thundered out a eulogy that had people practically shouting "Praise the Lord" and "Amen!" before Grant ever took to the stage.
|Amy Grant and Cynthia Smoot|
Amy Grant is one of those women who's so innately cool, that you really wish she lived next door so she could be your BFF. I could totally see us solving the problems of the world while she strummed the guitar over a cup of coffee every morning. Just sayin'. She took to the stage and sang. And then she'd tell a little tale and towards the end of her story, she'd start strumming her guitar... then drift into another song. This was a pro who has clearly mastered the art of holding an audience in the palm of her hand.
About the Salvation Army:
Operating year-round in over 120 countries, the Army's doctrine follow mainstream Christian beliefs, and its articles of faith emphasise God's "saving purposes". Its objects are "the advancement of the Christian religion… of education, the relief of poverty, and other charitable objects beneficial to society or the community of mankind as a whole." Founded in 1865, the Salvation Army is still going strong providing over 947,520 meals for the hungry, 337,708 nights of care for people, $971,727 in emergency financial assistance and 253,394 Christmas gifts given through their Angel Tree program in 2011.
photos: Dana Driensky