By T. Waldmann-Williams
For The Catholic Messenger
KNOXVILLE — Betty Moll, parishioner of St. Anthony’s, said this after receiving recognition for 17 years of service to Marion County veterans: “God gave me a gift of knowing when and how to contact someone to help others in need. It’s my Christian duty.”
Although this was Betty’s second retirement, she is far from retiring. Betty first retired from Knoxville’s VA hospital many years ago, but she wasn’t ready to retire then. Next, while working at the Department of Human Services as a volunteer coordinator, she read a job announcement for the Marion County Central Point of Coordination (CPC) position.
She felt she was qualified, applied and worked as Marion County’s CPC until May 2014. “Mike Kuhn (director of Marion County Veterans Affairs) and I shared an office with each other and found the issues he was working on were somewhat the same as mine. We helped each other and found we could do more together for our respective clients,” Betty said.
The CPC worked with those who need help living. “I tried to help those who were down and out. For instance, I have been good at groveling to ask for assistance for others. If you lay it on the line and are honest, others will work with you. I would say, ‘this is the situation, this is what I can do, what can you do?’ I was given a talent or gift of knowing what to do, who to contact and how to help others.”
One week after her second “retirement,” Betty became bored. “Society thinks I should sit home and pet my cat, which one of my sons gave me. But, that’s not for me.”
Betty now volunteers with the Neighbor Helping Neighbor program at First United Methodist Church. This nonprofit Christian organization provides emergency funds for persons in need of emergency assistance with rent, heat, electricity, water, food, gasoline for emergency travel and other critical expenses related to health issues. Money is raised through local donations and from Salvation Army bell ringing. “Some of my clients followed or found me and I can use my previous resources to continue helping others,” Betty said.
Her advice to avoid sitting home and being bored: “Do some volunteer work — respond by helping others. Find someplace that makes you feel good and brings you joy. I am using everything that I learned in my past. I am happy.”