John Parsons was greatly instrumental in starting the tutoring program for children in Longview that were in danger of being left behind, either due to learning disabilities or because of the stress placed upon the children and their parents during the pandemic. John brings a special compassion for these children because of his own difficulties and frustrations and being lost in the educational system when he was a child. This is the story of the Success Center, but more importantly it is the story of a young man who passes along the gift he received from his beloved tutor, Mrs. Stanton.
How it began:
Based on The Ready, Set, Go! Center model used at St. Matthew’s Lutheran Church in Fort Worth, in 2020, First Lutheran Started a no-cost tutoring and mentoring center called “The Success Center.” The rapidly changing educational needs of our community brought on by the Covid-19 pandemic and transition to online education, coupled with the recent hiring of John Parsons, who brought with him years’ experience running a tutoring center, brought First Lutheran to a place where it not only felt called but also properly equipped to begin this educational ministry.
With a vision to have “Little Christ’s” teaching, mentoring, and serving the Longview community, 7 days a week, without ever giving a sermon, picking up a Bible, or evangelizing, First Lutheran officially opened the doors of The Success Center, January 12th, 2020. The NT-NL Mission Endowment Fund awarded a grant to support this program from the beginning.
Through the generosity of First Lutheran members and a large grant from the Mission Endowment Fund of the NT-NL Synod; The Success Center now serves upwards of 25 students and represents the culmination of a 20-year dream of the congregation to have an educational ministry.
The Success of the Success Center
In 2021 The Success Center is launching its first extension program consisting of a series of Adult Education Workshops aimed at helping parents assist their children on their educational journey.