Originally published in the June 2015 Explorer

Raymond Street wears many hats. Literally.

Raymond is to hats, caps really, as Imelda Marcos is to shoes. I have no idea how many he owns, but his collection is impressive. When he wears a red shirt, he wears a red cap. Blue shirt; blue cap. White shirt; white cap. I like his style.

But Raymond also wears many hats figuratively. As one of two sextons in a church with large buildings and complexity of programming, Raymond is called upon to complete many tasks.

He cleans floors. He clears snow. He sets up and takes down chairs and tables. He arranges rooms. He delivers trash to our dumpster and recycling bin. He assists members who are carrying loads into or out of the church building. He makes repairs. He runs errands. He regulates the heating and cooling in the building. He prepares for weddings and funerals. After some events he locks up when everyone else is gone. You get the idea. Raymond does a little of everything.

Most of you would never see him arrive for work, because he gets here about 5 a.m. But when you ask him to help, he sets aside whatever he is doing and takes care of your need. And he does this without complaint—with a smile actually.

Raymond has been doing this for 20 years at River Road Church, Baptist. He completed two decades of service to this congregation as sexton on May 22. Following worship on June 14 the reception will be in Raymond’s honor. Never one to seek recognition or praise, Raymond reluctantly agreed to let us do this. I hope you will make it a point to be present.

Here’s what I want you to do. Bring a cap to church that day. Keep it off during worship, of course. Raymond would never wear one during worship. But following worship, when you come to the Fellowship Hall for the reception honoring Raymond, don your cap.

Hats on, then altogether, hats off to Raymond!