Happy New Year from Shanon’s House!
Since the last newsletter we’ve had guests from, Albertville, Tuscumbia, Athens, Pisgah, Phil Campbell, Muscle Shoals, Haleyville, Lexington, Guntersville, Moulton and Sheffield, Alabama, Ohio, Colorado, Georgia and New York.
Our guests from New York were a first for us at Shanon’s house. The mother and father of the baby used a surrogate for the birth of their baby. The night before they were to leave they told us their story. They told us how the mother was a cancer survivor. She said she could have carried a baby but the hormones in pregnancy would cause the cancer to come back. So they decided to use a surrogate and the surrogate they chose was from Huntsville. They told us how when the mother was going through her cancer treatment there was another mother going through cancer treatment also. They became good friends and this friend was such an encouragement to them. The friend passed away before their baby boy was to be born in Huntsville. This friends name was Shannon. Our guest said when they told her about staying at Shanon’s house she started crying, remembering her friend with the same name. She commented that Shanon’s house felt like home- this is one of the best compliments guests can give us! This is what they wrote about staying here.
“We are officially discharged from the NICU! I cried! It was so emotional! We owe the NICU team and Shanons house so much during this difficult time. They made it so easy getting through each day. We are truly blessed for all they did for us! There aren’t enough words to thank them. We truly love them! Our son left the hospital wearing a space/rocket outfit since Huntsville is known as Rocket City”. We enjoyed getting to know this couple and introducing them to Alabama!
Here’s a note from one of our guests.
Today I packed up my home away from home and said goodbye to friends. Shanon’s House was a blessing when I needed a place to stay to care for our baby boy. We will forever be indebted to the outreach that is Shanon’s House! How do I even begin to describe the last 2 1⁄2 weeks? Your kindness and goodness will forever be a part of this experience. We thank God that we were led to Shanon’s House

We had guests from Colorado stay with us and they wrote this note to the Mayfair family.
“Dear family, we spent 3 nights in your beautiful ‘Shanon’s house’ while being with our son in the ICU. What a wonderful ministry! It was so helpful and comfortable. Thank you for the sweet quilt. We will treasure it! Our hearts have been overwhelmed by the generous gestures. May God bless you as you continue to bless all He puts in your path. “

We had a sweet couple from Guntersville stay with us. When we told them that Shanon’s house was a ministry of Mayfair, they asked if the minister at Guntersville church of Christ was kin to one of our ministers, Gary Bradley. They told us how kind Phillip had been to them, allowing them to use their building when they had a wedding or funeral. One night they ate supper with us along with the grandparents. A few nights later they wanted to bring supper to us. We always enjoy it when couples will join us for supper. Sitting around the table is a way to really get to know people. They learned that my favorite flowers are hydrangeas. A few weeks after they left a bouquet of beautiful hydrangeas was on the back deck. We do meet the kindest people!

Most of our guests leave with a happy ending, but for those who leave with heavy hearts, Shanon’s house is a blessing for them also . Here is a note from a couple whose baby girl passed away a year before . “We were there in August 2017 after I had our baby girl. The Shanon’s house was an amazing blessing in our lives the short time we were there. It was so nice to have a place to stay close to the hospital. We can never say thank you enough!” Even in their sadness they are thankful for Shanon’s House!
Here’s a note we received recently from a special guest who we consider to be a friend and a great encourager to us. She wrote this to the “Tree of Life Quilters.” These ladies have made over 300 quilts for our guests. It often brings tears to families eyes when I present it to them. I always tell them that the quilt means they are covered in prayers. Guests never forget this kindness!
“Ladies, I was given one of your beautiful quilts in 2012. I cherish it! I use it a lot and each time I do I remember “it covers me with prayer.” We were involved in an accident in Florence, AL and my husband died as a result. My family stayed at Shanon’s house. That was such a blessing for us and we all cherish the wonderful way we were treated there. We count Johnny and Christy as “special friends.” May God continue to bless each of you by the special quilts that you make. They are

greatly appreciated.” We will get notes from her throughout the year and they often come at just the right time when we need some encouragement! I will always remember when she was here and her husband had passed away. She said, “God left me here for a reason so I’ll continue to serve Him.” Writing encouraging notes is one way she continues to serve !

A couple who stayed with us seven years ago, recently called and said they wanted to stop by to see us. Four years ago, the sister of the couple stayed with us also when her and her husband adopted a baby from Agape. One Saturday they all came by and we enjoyed seeing them and their children. They commented on how the house still smells the same. (I was baking bread that day. This has become the signature smell for Shanon’s house!) We enjoyed catching up with them. They wanted to teach their children about giving back, so they brought coffee, paper towels, & waters for guests. These couples will always hold a special place in our hearts.

In the last newsletter, I told you about getting a card in the mail from our guests who had lost their baby. The card announced that they were expecting another baby. There was a poem about a “rainbow baby.” I asked you to keep this sweet couple in your prayers. This evening there was a knock at the back door and it was this sweet couple with their 9 month old little boy. Today was their first little boy’s birthday. They visited the NICU and stopped by to see us. This always warms our hearts when guests come back to see us. I told them how I still have the notes they would leave thanking me for breakfast each morning. They too hold a special place in our heart.

Recently one of our former guests who stayed with us two years ago called about a friend who had a son in the ICU. I asked how we could help and she said “Maybe some of the people from your church could come and pray with them, like they did with us when we were in the hospital with our son. I will never forget that!” There’s a group of Mayfair members who visit the Hospital on Friday nights to pray with people. This was another reminder that hurting people never forget a kindness shown to them!

During the month of December, we enjoy going to the mail box. Guests send Christmas cards and I save all the cards through the years and it’s always makes us thankful to see how the tiny babies have grown.

This month we begin our 10th year at Shanon’s house. This year we have had 46 people stay with us. Every family has a story. Time has gone by so fast! We are thankful for all who make this ministry possible. We have had over 750 guests stay with us since the beginning of this ministry. Often we will have guests who have been referred to us by former guests. When new guests come in and see the refrigerator covered in pictures from former guests they will almost always recognize some of the babies and families. When guests come back often they will mention how they liked looking at the pictures on the refrigerator. Some of the pictures of the tiny babies give new moms and dads hope for their tiny babies.

Johnny and I continue to tell our guests how the Mayfair Church of Christ is the reason for this ministry, and how Mayfair is a church that cares about hurting people. Johnny and I are so thankful for all of you. Your prayers and interest and financial support of this ministry is blessing all those who come to stay at Shanon’s house. This ministry is truly a church wide effort! We continue to know that we couldn’t do this work without God’s help and your support. God has been so good to us to put us in a congregation of such loving and giving Christians. The Lord’s Church at Mayfair is making an impact all over the country. Since the beginning we have had guests from Texas, Colorado, Ohio, New York, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Tennessee, Mississippi, Michigan, Illinois, Washington, Massachusetts and all over Alabama. We hope 2019 will bring blessings to all of you as you continue to serve Him! We continue to be thankful to our Lord and Savior for allowing us to be here, for the Mayfair leadership who had a vision to help hurting people and for all of our brothers and sisters at Mayfair that make this ministry called Shanon’s House of Compassion a blessing to so many!
In Him
Johnny & Christy

Greetings from Shanon’s House,

The last few months have been busy at Shanon’s House.  We’ve had guests from Muscle Shoals, Moulton , Rainsville, Florence, Tuscumbia Albertville, Guntersville,Hartselle, Sheffield, Russellville, Vina, Town Creek, and Athens, AL , Iron City, Collinswood, Tn., and Austin , Texas.

In the spring we had two couples come to stay with us who had baby’s born at 25 weeks.  These couples stayed with us 17 weeks.  This is the longest we’ve had guests stay with us.  When we have couples stay with us for long periods of time, they really do become like family.  One of these families came to church almost every week while they were with us.   This always brings us joy. The day before they were to get to take their baby home, the dad handed me a letter at church.  He said don’t open it until you get home.  After I read it I knew why.  It was a four page handwritten letter, thanking us.  Here is a portion of the letter,
“It’s never an easy thing to do, having to tell someone goodbye, that you care about and love like family.  It’s hard to believe that nearly 4 months have swiftly came and went.  In some ways it’s easy to wish and to want to turn back the hands of time to go back and do something different or to change the outcome of an event.  In our case the reason we would turn back time is to experience the genuine love, and warm hospitality and relive the friendships we have made with the two of you,
Thanks to God delivering us to this “Eden on earth” called Shanon’s House.”

“It is with great tears of overwhelming joy mixed with tears of sadness that I must bring this letter to an end and start packing our things to bring our little man home on Monday.  We are truly blessed and honored to call you friends but even more so to call you family.  Since it is so hard to saygoodbye, we will say until a later date and time, in heaven or on earth.  Thank you again so very much!  You will always hold a special place in our hearts.” Yes, I cried reading this letter.  

Here’s another card we received, “ we just wanted to tell you how much we appreciated being able to stay at Shanon’s house during our baby’s stay in the NICU.  We pray continued blessings on you, the house and the Mayfair Church”

In the spring we had a guest reunion.  It was a special day seeing guests who had stayed with us in the past.  Seeing the babies who were born so small running around and playing was such a joy!  I save all the pictures that we’ve received through the years and had them displayed on a table.  The children and their parents enjoyed looking back at the pictures and telling them how Shanon’s house was where they stayed when they were first born and in the NICU.

We often receive cards from guests who have stayed with us in the past.  Here is a card from a family from Texas who stayed with us  3 years ago.  “We hope you are both doing well.  My husband continues to progress and we think of you often and the wonderful ministry of Shanon’s house. Shanon’s house has touched so many lives and we are eternally grateful.”  Please accept this small gift as a token of our appreciation for this ministry,”

Last year at this time we had a sweet couple stay with us with a baby in the NICU.  Their baby passed away a few days after they came.  We will always remember this couple as being one of the sweetest that have stayed with us.  We received a postcard from them recently announcing the arrival of a baby in May.  On the front of the postcard was this explanation of a Rainbow Baby. “A rainbow baby is the understanding that the beauty of a rainbow does not negate the ravage of the storm.  When a rainbow appears  it doesn’t mean the storm never happened or that the family is not still dealing with it’s aftermath.  What it means is that something beautiful and full of light has appeared in the midst of the darkness and clouds”.  I remember when they lost the baby I prayed that God would let them see brighter days and bless them with another child .  When we received this note I wrote “thank you “ by my request.  God is faithful and good! Please keep this couple in your prayers for a healthy baby in May.

We recently had a couple from Texas stay with us.  Her father was from Florence and they learned about us from someone at his church.  While most of our guests are young couples it was nice to have guests our age to stay with us.  She was an only child so the responsibility of her father was on her.  Her comment about the house was “ this feels just like home.”  I always tell guests that’s the best compliment they could give us!  The last day they were with us was a Sunday.  They came to church with us.  We knew this would be a hard day for her, having to leave her father and fly back to Texas. The last song sung that day was “The Lord bless you and keep you”. With tears in her eyes and in my mine we hugged and said goodbye. Here is part of the note they left for us.  “Thank you so much for blessing our lives with Shanon’s house.  We were so encouraged by our stay at Shanon’s House of Compassion.  It was amazing to be able to totally focus on my father and his healing instead of worrying about things that in the overall scheme of life are not very important.  The accommodations were comfortable and I enjoyed reading God’s word every night before bed. Thank you for making sure we had delicious food and warm coffee with real half and half.”
We meet the sweetest people who become lifelong friends!   

Recently we had a young couple stay with us with twins.  The father asked if we wanted to go see the babies. I never ask to go see the babies but if the guests ask me if I want to go the answer is always yes!  He told me “we think of y’all as grandparents and would love for you to see our babies !”

One of the sweetest times at Shanon’s house is when guests start to leave and Johnny asks if they would mind if he prayed for them. It’s a special time for our guests and for us.

This month we will begin our ninth year here at Shanon’s house. Looking back I realized that the first couple that stayed with us had triplets who will soon be nine years old.  The Mayfair congregation has  blessed almost 700 guests who have stayed at Shanon’s house.   
We’ve learned a lot in the years we’ve been here.  

We’ve learned that people are grateful for the little things.  Breakfast in the morning, a note on their bed saying everything has been washed after every guest .

We’ve learned that you don't have to say a lot of words, listening to them is a comfort.

We’ve learned it does take a whole church to make a ministry like Shanon’s house work.

We have come to love and appreciate the Mayfair Church more for your loving and giving spirit!   We continue to tell our guests that this is a ministry that includes the whole church.  Johnny and I are so blessed to call you our brothers and sisters in Christ.  We know we could not do this work first with out the Lord’s  help and secondly without the prayers and encouragement from our church family.  We look forward to another year in this ministry.  Thank you for your prayers , your financial support and your continued interested in this ministry. God has been so good to send us such sweet families, and to have a church family like Mayfair. We wish for all of you to have a happy and blessed new year in 2018!

In Him,
Johnny and Christy

Greetings from Shanon’s House,

The last few months we've had guests from, Rainsville, Sheffield, Muscle Shoals, Tuscumbia, Russellville, Hanceville, Al., Louisville Ky., also Maryland & Lawrenceburg, TN.

It's been a busy few months.  In November we had a very sweet lady from Louisville, Kentucky stay with us.  She came to church with us and all of you were so kind to her.  She and her daughter were in Huntsville for a wedding when her daughter became ill.  She learned of Shanon's House from the church service that Mayfair conducts at the hospital each Sunday. We enjoyed this guest so much.  I told her that I would adopt her as my daughter and she said,    "that's it, I am part of your family now!"  Several weeks after she left she called to tell us her daughter was doing good and to tell us again how much she appreciated Shanon's House.

I always enjoy going to the mailbox in the month of December.  We receive cards everyday from guests who have stayed with us over the years.  I save all the pictures and enjoy looking back and seeing how these tiny babies have grown.  This year we received a letter from guests that stayed with us five years ago. They updated us on the family and sent a picture of their family. They were some of our favorite guests and I still had their picture from 5 years ago on the refrigerator.  They wrote "We hope this letter finds you both happy and healthy.  We think and pray for you often, especially this time of year.  We can't believe it's been 5 years since our sweet boy was born.  It was one of happiest and scariest moments of our lives, but Shanon's House helped us through that difficult time more than you will ever know.  We plan to come and visit soon!"

The month of December is a joyful time of the year for most people, but for some it's the saddest time of year.  The last few years we have had guests whose loved ones have passed away during the month of December.  This was the case with a very kind lady and her adult daughter. They were here for a couple of weeks when they had to make difficult decisions. On the day their loved one passed away the daughter came by the house to tell us bye and how grateful she was for Shanon's House.  This is the note she gave us. "Today is the day the Lord has made, let us rejoice and be glad in it!  Our Lord is a present help and He definitely sent Shanon's House to help our family.  God never ceases to amaze. We will never forget God's love shown to us through Shanon's House".

We had a couple with a newborn that stayed with us in December.  This couple was a joy to have as guests.  The couple had been at Shanon's House for a week when the parents learned that the baby would have to stay a few days longer.  The mother said, "I told the doctor it was ok if our baby has to stay longer, I like it at Shanon's House!"  This made our day! This is the note they left us. "Thank you so much for the hospitality you have shown us the past few days.  You have no idea what a blessing Shanon's House has been in our lives.  It is so nice to leave the hospital and come to a house where we feel comfortable and can enjoy great company. Shanon's House is a wonderful ministry and we will always be grateful for this ministry.  It's been a blessing from God."

We had a couple that left this week.  Their baby was born very early and was very sick. They were one of the sweetest families that have stayed with us in all the years.  Every morning the dad would leave me a note thanking me for the breakfast. One day I told him I was experimenting with a dish I served for breakfast. He left this note "Mrs. Johnson, your experiment was a success. Patent it!  Thank you for the wonderful breakfast.  God bless you.  You can never out give God." The dad was talking with Johnny one night and telling him about the baby.  He said, “We believe in the sovereignty of God.  He knows what's best and we will accept it."  We don't ask a lot of questions when our guests come back to the House, but we knew that they were worried and when they said they wouldn't be back for the night, but wanted to stay by the baby's bed, we knew that the baby would pass away soon.  The next afternoon, the grandparents came back to gather the couples belongings from the room.  The grandmother told us the baby had passed away and hugged me and said how much they appreciated Shanon's House.  She said the couple would be back in a few days to see us.  Later that evening the sweet couple came by and said, "We couldn't leave without telling you good bye. We don't understand why this happened but we trust God. We only see the first float in the parade but God sees the whole parade."  Johnny prayed with them before they left.  This part of Shanon's House will always be hard for us. We only knew this family for two weeks but they endeared themselves to us from the very beginning.  The father said after things settle down they would like to come back and go to church with us to tell the church thank you.

 Recently one lady called about staying here and said, "This is wonderful!  What would make a church want to do something like Shanon’s House?”  I was able to tell her about how Mayfair is a very loving and caring and giving congregation.

This month we will start our 8th year at Shanon's House. We've learned a lot of lessons in the past 7 years and one of them is that the Mayfair church of Christ is a very unique Congregation of the Lords people.  They saw a need, stepped out in faith, and trusted God to make it happen.  Because of their vision they have blessed over 600 hurting people. Johnny and I look forward to another year at Shanon's House.   Thank you all for your prayers and support. We wish for all of you blessings in the New Year!

In Him,

Johnny and Christy

 Greetings from Shannon's house ,
 Since our last newsletter we have a guest from Tuscumbia, Florence, Scottsboro, Grant, Boaz, Danville, Athens, Sheffield, Muscle Shoals, Rogersville, Moulton, Haetselle and Anderson, Alabama and Washington & Texas.

Our guests from Washington were a couple adopting a baby. The husband was in the Navy and they were in the process of being transferred to Memphis, Tn,  when they got the news that the baby they were adopting was born in Huntsville. We enjoyed this family so much.   The grandmother from Texas came to stay with her daughter. Adoptions always touch our hearts. This couple had waited for over 10 years for baby and had come very close several times with adoptions it didn't work out. The baby was able to  go home sooner than they thought would happen. The couple had to stay in state for certain amount of time. She went to a hotel but came back to visit with the baby.

We had a guest from the ICU this past fall.    While we enjoy having couples we also enjoy the older guest. This guest was so kind. We enjoyed visiting with him each day. Once while watching TV, he asked me if the TV was too loud. I assured him  it wasn't. Then he said, " well it would make me feel more  at home if you would holler, turn that TV down!"   We still laugh and remember how much we enjoyed this older gentleman .

 The month of December is one of  our favorite months.   We received cards almost every day during the month.   Here are a few of the notes we received .

" We stayed with you in June of this year while our son was in the  NICU.   I am writing to say thank you for being there for us during such a difficult time. We cannot find the words to tell you how grateful we are to you and your church. We wish for you a very merry Christmas and a happy new year. Please extend the same wishes to your church as well as the women he took the time to make our son's quilt.   If there is anything we can ever do for you or your church please let us know.

"A special thank you for the kindness you extended to me during my husband's stay in the hospital.  It was a very stressful time in life because he was so sick .  Thznk you for all the prayers that were sent up to our Heavenly Father.   I also want to thank Shanon's  parents and the Mayfair church of Christ. This is a wonderful and much needed ministry. May God bless you all ."

"I want to apologize for taking so long in writing and thank you for your hospitality while our granddaughter  was in the Huntsville Hospital  and for the beautiful quilt you sent to us. Since the accident the last year has been a blur.  Our granddaughter was flown to Children's Hospital the day of the accident and has made a full recovery.  Our  other granddaughter who was at Huntsville Hospital has made a lot of progress While she is still unable to speak, eat and walk, her smiles and laughter brighten the darkest days. Our precious grandson went to be with Jesus the day of the accident and we miss him so much. The holidays are still very difficult for us.   Thank you again for  providing such a wonderful service for people like us who are in the midst of crisis ."

During the month of December we had two families with twins  stay with us.  One family had twin girls born a few weeks early and the other family had twin boys born very early. It is a roller coaster of emotions for parents when their babies come into the world so early and weigh  just over 1 pound.   Both of these couples were very thankful for Shanon's  house. The couple with the baby boys had one of the babies pass away just a few days after coming to Shanon's house. They were brokenhearted but held out hope for the other baby. One morning everyone was  sitting at the table eating breakfast. The mother was planning to do some Christmas shopping, when their phone rang and  they left immediately for the hospital.   We were  away from the house that evening when we got a call from the couple who had the twin girls, telling us that the other couples baby boy had passed away .   We
left to come home and on the way home the baby boy's father called us to tell us the sad news. They
had friends come and clean out the room, but they didn't want to leave until they told us goodbye. This touched our hearts. Even with their broken hearts they were thankful for Shanon's  house .   When we walked in  they were in the living room and we just hugged them and cried with them. The father said " we had such big plans for our boys ."   We do come to care for the families and hurt with them when they lose a loved one .

 In February we were  blessed to have a couple with a tiny baby born at 25 weeks gestation.  The baby weighed 1 lb. 6 oz. Soon after our guest arrived  she invited me to go see her baby. I never ask to go see the babies but if the guests ask me I always say yes!   Our daughter is expecting a baby and this baby girl was the size of our unborn grandchild at 25 weeks gestation. It's amazing to see how everything was so perfectly formed with this tiny baby that wasn't even supposed to be born yet. Our guest commented on how she couldn't understand how anyone could not  believe in God when they see this precious baby! We enjoyed this family so much. After 11 weeks the baby weighed 5 pounds and was going home. Here's the note she left for us .

" I have been here for 11 weeks and two days. I have enjoyed getting to become part of the Shanon's  house family.   The Sharon's house has been such a blessing to me. I love you both and thank you for the prayers for my baby and for my family."

 While this family was with us they became friends with another couple staying with us. One night the mother came in and was upset, her little boy had a setback that evening. It was a sweet moment when the other mother hugged her and Johnny ask if he could pray for her and her baby.

 Here's the note she left for us .
" we are so very thankful for the Shanon's house. Staying here has made  this journey  so much easier. I truly believe  God put you in our path for a reason. Thank you so much ."

 Both of these families became so very dear to our hearts. One night they came in and said "  we met some people from your church, they came by and prayed with us."  This made  a very good impression on them.   They commented on how they would be coming to visit Mayfair when their babies were older to say "thank you to all of you ."

Recently we had a guest come by from Texas who had stayed with us four years ago.   Her husband had been in Huntsville on business and became ill with the staff infection and was in very serious condition for several weeks. She and her husband were in town last week and she wanted to bring her husband back to see the house. We enjoyed meeting him and visiting with both of them .

 Two years ago a family stayed with us that had a baby in the NICU.   It was during the winter months. They had an eight year old that was out of school because of the snow. While we don't have children stay with us, we made an exception for this family. We enjoyed getting to know this little girl. Her mother contacted me a few days ago and told me her daughter had to do a school project and she chose to do it on Shanon's  house. She won second  place in the district  and was going to  Montgomery to compete at the state level. Her mother sent a message telling me she had won first place in her category in Montgomery and that her judge was very impressed with Shanon's  house!

 This January  we began our seventh year at Shanon's  house. The years have gone by so fast. Shanon's  house is been a blessing to guests as far away as Washington state any one  overseas guest  from Germany.   Shanon's  house has also been a blessing to us.   We have met so many guest who we now call friends. Johnny and I are very grateful to all of our Mayfair  family.   We still tell our guests how all of you are part of the Shanon's  house ministry and how Mayfair is a very loving and giving church. We know that we could not do this without God's help and the support of our church family.
 Thank you again for your prayers, financial support and continued interest in this ministry. Our prayer is that God will continue to bless all of you as you have blessed us and all who have and will come to Sharon's house of compassion .

 In Him,
Johnny & Christy

Greetings from Shanon's House,
Since our last newsletter we've had guests from Florence, Boaz, Phil Campbell, Baileyton, Blountsville, Muscle Shoals, Tuscumbia, Waterloo, Al, Nashville, Tn, and Columbus Ga.
 During the winter months Shanon's  house was an extra blessing to couples with newborns. They didn't have to worry about icy roads because of Shanon's house being right across the street from their babies. On the night it snowed the young couple staying with us built us a snowman in the front yard.  We always enjoy the energy young couples bring to us. During this same time we received a referral from the ministry of  Manna meals. This guest was  from Nashville.  While we enjoy young couples we also enjoy having guests who are our age.  We discovered while talking with this guest that we had mutual friends. These  two families stayed at the same time and enjoyed getting to know each other.

We had guests with twins in the NICU recently.  When I gave them the quilts from the tree of life quilters they said "we will tell our babies that Shanon's house was their first home." This couple called several weeks later and needed Shanon's house again, one of their babies had been admitted to the hospital.  While we don't usually have small children at Shanon's house, we made an exception for this family.  This was a very caring mother and father who didn't want to be away from either of their babies. Getting to hold a new born baby that night was a special treat for me!

It's always a special time when a couple adopting a baby comes to stay at Shanon's house. When this couple arrived the first thing the adoptive mother said was "I want to hug your neck because you took care of my brother and his wife when their baby was born two years ago."  We remembered her brother and still had their family picture on the refrigerator.  This couple had waited a long time for a baby and they were so excited. It was so touching to hear how they were so concerned for the birth mother and father. They commented how they have been given the most precious and unselfish gift from this birth mother and father.  While sitting in the kitchen eating one night they said " this feels just like my Mom's  house especially when I look over and see my brother's picture on the refrigerator. " We laughed and talked about how Shanon's house is everybody's house.

 Here are a few of the notes we received.
"Thank you so much for the kindness you've shown.  Your Church and the family of Shanon are truly such a blessing to those of us in need.  Such an awesome testimony to all believers in Christ.  May God richly bless you for that you do and continue to do."

 "Thank you so much for allowing us to stay at Shanon's  house while our son was in NICU.  Your kind words and gifts and prayers go along way. Thank you for being so kind and helpful during this rough time. Please pass along our thanks to the Mayfair church of Christ for making Shanon's house possible."
 "Words cannot begin to express how grateful we are for allowing us to stay at Shanon's house. This is a wonderful ministry. Thank you so very much."

 Recently we visited a church in Florence where several of our guests went to church. They wanted us to tell the Mayfair church thank you again for Shanon's  house.

 We had a guest stay with us that was going to have surgery the next day.  We didn't have any other guests at the time and offered for her family to stay also.  This was a very sweet family. Usually we give the family the quilt from the Tree of Life quilters but this time we were able to give it to the patient.  I always tell them that a quilt means they are covered in prayers.  The Tree of Life quilters have made such an impact on people's lives with the beautiful quilts they make for each of our guests.  Here's the note we received from this guest.

"It's very hard to put into words my deep appreciation of being able to stay at Shanon's house. Myself and my children felt very comfortable there. It was as if we had known you for a long time.   I hope to return when I'm ready for my treatment. Shanon's house is a great ministry.  People at the hospital were amazed by my quilt and the story behind it. May God continue to bless the Shanon's  house ministry."

 One of the highlights of the year was the five year guest's reunion.  The week before the reunion it rained every day. I was a little stressed because we had planned to have lunch served in the garden for the reunion. On the day of the reunion it was a beautiful  day!  There were around 60 former guests and their children in attendance .  It was heartwarming to see the children playing and seeing former guests, some of them who stayed with us five years ago. One father stood looking toward the hospital and said with tears in his eyes " I still remember looking out my window and praying for my  little girl.  We will always be thankful for Shanon's house. "

One family that stayed with us 4 years ago wrote a note saying "when I walked in the house that day at  the reunion it was once again like home to me. We will forever be grateful and feel that staying at Shanon's  house was laid out before hand by God."

 Some of our board members helped out with the reunion and seeing all the couples talking and laughing commented how they all acted like they knew each other.  I told them  that they were all part of the Shanon's house family.  Several of our guests refer to us as their Shanon's House Mom and Dad and this warms our hearts.

The reunion was a beautiful reminder how God has blessed this ministry and how Johnny and I have been blessed to be a small part of this ministry.  I asked God for a beautiful day and sweet memories for everyone. God said "yes " to both of those requests.  We had guests who came that day that had left Shanon's house with broken hearts and there were guests who came whose lives had been changed in an instant.   Yet they didn't give up.  They have shown us what praising God in the storm looks like. They have increased our faith.  There were babies who were born so tiny and now were running around playing and laughing.  They were testimony to the world of how every life is precious no matter how small.

When we moved to Huntsville  I asked God to send me friends. Through  Shanon's house we have met some of the sweetest families.  They were our guests but now we call them friends.  We are so thankful for the Shanon's  house Board of Directors, they are our support system.  We are grateful to Shanon's parents for carrying on the legacy of their son, who while on earth cared for and served others.   We along with our guests are grateful to the loving brothers and sisters at the Mayfair Church of Christ for making Shanon's house possible.  Most of all we are thankful to our Heavenly Father who takes our small requests and answers them in the most amazing ways.

In Him,
Johnny and Christy

Greetings from Shanon's House,

The summer and fall months have brought us guests from Athens, Hartsell, Florence, Albertville, Falkville, Danville, and Scottsboro, Alabama as well as Texas and Kentucky.

It's been a busy few months at Shanon’s house.  A knock at the door a few days ago brought us one of our first guests. His baby boy weighed less than 2 lbs when he was born. Now he is almost 5 years old and healthy. The next week a family that stayed with us two years ago stopped by to see us. This last family has been especially encouraging to us. Every few months we will get a card from them just saying they were thinking of us. They told us every time they look at the quilt from the " Tree of Life Quilters," they remember Shanon's house. They told us to tell the Mayfair Church "thank you" again.

Fortunately most people who stay with us leave with a happy ending. But of course that's not always the case. The summer months brought us two families with newborns. One baby was born very early and the other baby was born only three weeks early. Both families were here at the same time and so appreciative of Shanon’s house. The baby who was born three weeks early only lived four days. This family touched our hearts. Up until the time they came to the hospital they were expecting to take a healthy baby boy home. We got word that the baby was not expected to live and they would not be coming in that night. The next morning we saw their car and thought maybe the baby had made it through the night. When they came in the kitchen I knew from their faces that their precious little one was now in the arms of Jesus. I said, "I'm so sorry. I wish there was something I could do to make it easier for you." They said, "we don't understand why this happened, but we know God does and we will never stop serving the Lord." They wrote in a blog about Shanon’s house and how it was a blessing. They said "we were staying at Shanon's house right next door to the hospital in fact you could see the house in the window where our baby’s bed was. This was a "God thing." Shanon’s house is a ministry of the Mayfair Church of Christ. The house was beautiful and immaculate and welcoming and the blessing of it all was it was free of charge. God is so good!"

The other couple with the tiny baby touched our hearts also. They had a six-year-old little girl while we don't usually have children stay with us we made an exception for this family. She needed them and they needed her. While she was here she was a delight and she brought smiles to her parents and to us. Their baby lived two weeks and then he passed away. Like the other couple they came back to Shanon’s house for the night. The next morning the little girl told me "my baby brother got to go see Jesus last night." Her sweet parents are heartbroken but even in their grief they were thankful for Shanon's house. They wrote "thank you so much for the kindness and love you have shown us. Staying here was an answered prayer. You will always hold a special place in our hearts." Both families mentioned Mayfair and Shanon’s house in the obituaries.

One of our guests found out about Shanon's House through Manna meals. Her son had been in ICU for three months. She also went to the Church service that Mayfair provides at the hospital. After spending over 100 days in the hospital, her son was able to go home. He called Johnny to personally thank him for letting his mom and fiancé stay here.

"This feels just like home" is a comment we hear so many times from our guests. One guest wrote "Thank you so much for all your kindness and generous hospitality. What a wonderful service you provide. It is truly a home away from home."

Another guest wrote in a blog, "We were staying at Shanon's House.  The house is lovely and very accommodating. Just when we thought it could not be any nicer they gave us a beautiful quilt. The quilt is to remind us that we are covered in prayers. The house is a ministry of the Mayfair church of Christ. This place is so special and we feel blessed to be here."

Here are a few notes we received. "Thank you so much for allowing us to stay here. You were an answered prayer. I pray that God will bless you and the church for all you do to help people in our situation. I know you have blessed us."

"I have enjoyed my visit at Shanon's House. I appreciate all you did for me. The hospitality was wonderful. May God bless you in your work. You made my stay so much easier."

 When one family was leaving they said with tears in their eyes, " how can we ever repay you? When we add up how much it would have cost and how hard it would have been to be so far from our baby, we are so thankful for this ministry."

One day two couples who stayed with us almost two years ago came by to visit with their babies. They call us their Shanon's house mom and dad. I took a picture of all of them and posted it on facebook. The grandmothers of both of the couples commented, and one of them said "Thank you and Mayfair Church of Christ for what y'all are doing to help families. I was so proud that my kids had a Christian place to stay so close to my grand baby while she was in the NICU. May God bless you in this mission. In Christian love, a grandmother." The other commented, "Yes, Thank you Mayfair Church of Christ for what y'all did for my kids and all the parents who stay there, it's truly a blessing from God."

Shanon’s House is a unique ministry in that all ages can help with different projects. The 4th grade class bought paper supplies and came over to deliver them. Several couples in the Life Savers class used Service day to host a luncheon at Shanon's house for the widows in the class and their service project was to bring supplies of paper products. The teen group did a great job doing yard work this fall. It is such a blessing to work with all these groups.

It's hard to believe that we have been here five years. I think back to 2007 when we received a call about my nephew who was in ICU in Little Rock, Arkansas. We rushed to be there with my sister and brother-in-law. We witnessed people sleeping in chairs and eating out of machines. We saw how the Pleasant Valley Church of Christ reached out to my sister and brother-in-law. They provided food and an apartment for them to stay in. I remember us saying, "The ICU waiting room is an untouched ministry. We wish there was some way we could help with a ministry for hurting people." Then in 2010 God answered that prayer with Shanon's house. We have learned so much from this ministry. We have met so many sweet people. Many have become friends that we will always cherish. We have had close to 500 people stay with us over five years. Our prayer is that other congregations will use Shanon's house as a model and more houses will be opened for hurting people.

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas at Shanon's house and this is the season the world is focused on giving. Johnny and I appreciate the Mayfair church for giving to so many hurting people all year long through Shanon's house. We are so thankful for all of you who support this ministry financially and for those who pray for this ministry. We are very humbled to be able to work in this ministry along side all of you. We truly receive more than we give. God has been so faithful to provide everything we need. We tell our guests that while they may only see us, there is a whole congregation of loving people that makes this ministry work. We appreciate so much your kind words and encouragement. Johnny and I, as well as our guests, wish all of you a Merry Christmas and many blessings in the New Year.

In Him,

Johnny and Christy 

Greetings from Shanon's House,
The winter and spring months bought us guests from, Guntersville, Florence, Athens, Tuscumbia, Flat Rock, Hartselle , Scottsboro and Birmingham Alabama.  We also had guests from, Fayettville, TN, Woodstock, Georgia, Meridian, Mississippi and Pineville, Kentucky.  We also had a guest from Germany.

We never know who will show up at the door at Shanon's house.  A few weeks ago we had a full house and everyone was eating breakfast when I saw a man dressed in a suit at the back door.  When I opened the door the first thing he showed me was his badge.  He told me he was with the Alabama Bureau of Investigation and asked if I lived here or if I was a guest.  I was frightened for a moment but then he told me he was inquiring about the wife of one of his fellow ABI agents staying with us. The injured Agent had been in a very bad accident and the Agents  were looking after her.  He came in to check out Shanon's house.  That afternoon five of the injured man's fellow agents  came over to the house to bring the wife's belongings. When we told them how Shanon's house was a ministry of the Mayfair church of Christ they said they had heard of  Mayfair from Manna meals at the hospital earlier that day.  The wife stayed at the hospital at night but would come over in the morning to shower and have a few hours of quietness.  She was so grateful for Shanon's House. Often it's the little things that mean so much to people, a cup of coffee, and a quiet place where you can be by yourself to gather your thoughts.  The Agents took turns staying with her 24 hours a day.  They would bring her over to Shanon's house and park in the back for a couple of hours and wait on her.  We were very impressed with their compassion for this family.  One of them told me they think of their fellow Agents as their brothers. One morning several ABI agents  came to the door, and we knew then that it was probably sad news.  The injured Agent passed away later that day.  I didn't have a quilt for her when she was here but the "Tree of Life" quilters went to work making a special quilt for her and a friend took it to her.  A few weeks later the wife came back to bring a gift basket to share with the other guests at Shanon's house.  She told us how even in the midst of tragedy she could see Gods hand at work.  It always touches our heart when our guests loved ones pass away. In one way we feel helpless because the guests are hurting and there is nothing we can do or say to make the situation better.  But when our guests tell us how Shanon's house was a comfort in their storm, we see how God can comfort them through this ministry and they leave knowing that people care and are praying for them.

We took a few days off and stayed at our other house but I needed to come over to Shanon's  house to get a room ready.  While I was cleaning the door bell rang and it was guests from a couple of months ago bringing their baby and two year old to see us.  This makes our day when we have guests come back to see us. We tell them this is the best gift they could give us.   They brought breakfast goodies to share with the guests and a picture of their baby for the refrigerator.

A few days later I got a text from a guest who stayed with us a year ago asking if we were home.  This family lost their 17 year old in an accident and their 14 year was in critical condition for several weeks while they stayed with us.   They came by with their daughter to visit.  This was the first time we had met the daughter.  This family will always be a beautiful example of staying faithful to God even in the saddest of times.  They asked us to tell all of you thank you again for Shanon's House.

The snow days were beautiful here.  We had guests here with a new baby in NICU and their 8 year old was out of school and was missing her mom.  We told them that she could stay with us if it would help them out.  We enjoyed her being here. She wanted to build a snowman one day so we went out to help her.  These were sweet memories for her and for us.  A  thoughtful sister at church made pillow cases with Bible verses on them to give to our guests.  I gave one to  the 8 year old.  Her mother sent me this message "I wanted to let you know when the weather was stormy the other day
and we were gathering our things for our safe place, my daughter brought her pillow that has the
pillow case you gave her.  It is the one she sleeps on every night.  She said she brought it with her that night because it has a "God saying" and that made her feel safer.  Thought you would enjoy hearing that."  It's the little things that all of you do that leave a lasting impact on our guests.

One Sunday evening we were on our way to Church and Johnny commented " we have two rooms full but not a full house."  I said " well, the nights not over yet."  We laughed about how we never know what a day will bring.  After church Johnny gets a call on his cell phone.  The caller says "hey brother Johnny we are here in the Pediatric ICU with our baby.  Do you have a room for us at Shanon's house?"  This was a couple who stayed with us a year ago. They had recently sent a new family picture that was on the front on the refrigerator.  We told them we did have a room and enjoyed seeing them again.  They wanted us to tell you "Thank you."

Often guests will ask us how they can repay the Church for Shanon's house.  We tell them to pay it forward.   A year ago we had three couples here who became close friends.  Recently they asked us to a dinner they were  preparing for the NICU parents at the hospital.  This was their way of " paying it forward."  This was so encouraging for us. So many times we only hear of the bad news but one of the many blessings we receive at Shanon's house is being able to see so many good deeds done by young couples like these who are reaching out to others. We enjoyed visiting with them at the dinner and catching up with what's going on in their lives.

Here are several notes we have received- "Dear Mayfair church, thank you so much for everything you have done for our  family.  What a blessing it is for sleep deprived, displaced from home mamas to be able to find respite here!  Thank you Mayfair church for supporting this wonderful ministry.  Shanon's house was an answered prayer in my time of need.

" Thank you again for your hospitality to our family.  We are forever grateful and blessed by this ministry."

"Thank you so much for your generosity and most of all for your prayers.  Shanon's house has made these past few weeks easier to bear and we will be forever grateful."

We received a call about a couple and their daughter needing a place to stay.  The mother and father were from Kentucky and the daughter lived in Germany.  This was a sweet family and they were very thankful for Shanon's house.  This is the note from them. "Dear Mayfair Church of Christ, Thank you for your kind hospitality during our stay in Huntsville. The peace and solitude of this home here have fulfilled our needs during this difficult time.  We hope you will accept a small token of our appreciation. Your kindness, consideration and prayers were invaluable! Thank you very much

The spring time at Shanon's house is one of our favorite times of the year.  The dogwood trees and the Azaleas blooming are so pretty.  The garden is coming back to life after the winter months. Service day brought several from the Life Savers class to help put out mulch. The garden was the perfect setting for a luncheon for the Mayfair graduating senior girls and their huddle leaders.  It was a sweet memory for everyone.

 Recently we were telling some one about Shanon's  house and when we said it was a ministry of the Mayfair Church of Christ her response was " that Church is known for helping people all over this city."  Johnny and I are thankful to all of you for the way you come along side of us to help make a difference in hurting peoples lives. We know we couldn't do this work without The Lord's help and the help and encouragement from our church family.

We are so thankful for everyone who stops by to visit, who ask us about Shanon's house, and those who contribute in any way.  Shanon's house through your support is continuing to bless others all over Alabama and beyond.  May God bless all of you as you are blessing those that are our guests at Shanon's house.

In Him,
Johnny and Christy