LITTLE EGG HARBOR, N.J.—At Calvary Baptist Church, a new group called Chic Café is meeting for multigenerational fellowship and to support the church’s missionaries.
The idea for Chic Café (“Chic” stands for “Calvary Hearts in Christ”) originally came from Char Sutton, the leader of Calvary Baptist’s women’s Bible study, says Michelle Dellaperute, who schedules the speakers for Chic Café and is the wife of Pastor Mike Dellaperute. She says, “Char and I had been brainstorming on a ministry for women because, aside from the women’s study, there was only one other women’s group—the Dorcas society. While Dorcas drew support from older women, younger women were not getting involved, and as a result, there was a disconnect between the generations. So we decided to ask a few women who did attend if they would meet with us to discuss a fresh, new idea. Their only concern was that the Dorcas ladies did some really nice things throughout the year for shut-ins, missionaries, and college kids. We decided that we wanted to combine those things with an outreach type of women’s ministry so we can reach more women for Christ. This created a buzz with young and old alike.”
So on the second Monday evening of each month, ladies of all ages meet at the church for fellowship. At the most recent meeting, a Christian fashion consultant came from New York City to present a fashion night out for the ladies. Danielle Brower—a stylist trained by Stacy London of What Not to Wear—started her FashionEastA (Fashion for East Africa) styling business in 2009 while working full-time for a nonprofit Christian organization and living in Washington, D.C.
Michelle explains, “All proceeds she raises through FashionEastA goes directly to an orphanage she served at in Africa that is near to her heart. During her time in D.C., most of her clients worked on Capitol Hill. She also held small fund-raising fashion events at local boutiques to raise money for children in Africa. In the summer of 2011, her dream to relocate to the fashion capitol of the world became a reality, and she moved to Manhattan.”
Danielle says her business “began for a love of fashion and a love of missions, and was created to inspire others to use creativity to give back what God has given us.” She is now working as a stylist in New York for private clients, is a blog writer for a new Christian fashion magazine called Graceful Chic, and working at Ralph Lauren.
Danielle gave the women of Calvary Baptist Church their own “What Not to Wear” seminar and told them what God had done in her life through fashion. Sharing her unique skills in the informal setting, she answered questions ranging from how to teach modesty to how to tie a scarf.
“In the end,” Michelle says, “the women had a wonderful time, the gospel was shared, and we all looked great the following Sunday! Chic Café provides a unique fellowship opportunity for women of all ages at Calvary, and we hope God continues to bless us as we strive to encourage each other.”