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An Afternoon Tea at The Greens

Dainty seniors gather to share fellowship and encouragement

Ursula V. Battle | 8/15/2014, 6 a.m.
Adorned in white gloves, and beautiful hats, well-dressed, dainty ladies chatted with one another while enjoying a spot of tea ...
Carrie Barnes at resident at the Greens with Carolyn Cromwell, an invited guest. (Photo: Ursula V. Battle)

— Adorned in white gloves, and beautiful hats, well-dressed, dainty ladies chatted with one another while enjoying a spot of tea at high noon. While this may sound like a group of women having tea in London, it was the scene at The Greens at Liberty Road on Wednesday, August 6, 2014.

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Barbara Cooper enjoys a cup of tea. Cooper gave the Occasion at the Tea Party.

The Greens at Liberty Road are senior apartment homes located in Randallstown, Maryland. The tea was organized by Odessa Alston, a resident at The Greens.

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Theresa Morton, 95, a resident at The Greens.

"Everyone really enjoys these events,” said Alston. “I would like to thank Charlotte Dorman, Gwen Bryant, Phyllis Tucker, and Margaret Dugan for all the work they did in pulling this event together and making it a success.”

According to Alston, the tea is among the events held at The Greens monthly.

In addition to a wide assortment of teas, residents, friends, and volunteers also enjoyed light refreshments and perused the display tables that were set-up for the event.

"This tea was outstanding," said Theresa Morton, 95, who resides at The Greens. "This is my fifth one this year."

In addition to tea and refreshments, the event included a short program. Barbara Cooper gave the Occasion.

"Sugar and spice and everything nice are supposedly what little girls are made of, and they're also essential ingredients of the traditional afternoon or high tea," said Cooper during the Occasion. "The English custom is a civilized way to entertain, and it breaks up the day in a nice way. There is something very special about this ritual. No one is quite sure when afternoon teas were first introduced in England, but the ceremony became widespread in the 1840s."

She continued, "Credit is given to Anna, The Duchess of Bedford, who, because of the long stretch of time between lunch and the evening meal, suffered from afternoon hunger spells. She remedied them with a tray of tea, bread, butter, and cake. Once she began sharing her delightful new habit with friends, it soon developed into a full-blown social event among the English social aristocracy."

Cooper, who was a guest, says she enjoyed participating in the event.

"It's a joy to be in the midst of so many wonderful seniors that reside at The Greens," said Cooper. "The Tea was an opportunity for women to come together, celebrate one another, and share love."

During the program, the women also prayed, sang, gave testimonials, recited poems, offered words of encouragement, and shared inspirational readings. Julia Randall shared an inspirational story with the attendees, while Barbara Miles sang two songs.

"I was invited as a belated birthday present," said Carolyn Cromwell. "I love the camaraderie and the friendship. I really enjoyed the fellowship and meeting new people."

Dressed in yellow, Iola Young says she also enjoyed the event. "It's just beautiful," said Young who also resides at The Greens. I like everything about it. It’s always nice when Odessa has something.”

Carrie Barnes, 82, gave the event’s closing prayer.

"This is a tremendous event,” said Barnes. "It was warm and the fellowship was great. I love fellowship, and I love people."

Lucy Griffin also resides at The Greens.

"I love God and I love people," she said. "I really enjoyed this event."

Cecelia Coffey sang during the tea.

"God is in charge of everything," said Coffey who is a resident. "What a wonderful event."