News Release

Serving Others: A Pattern to Follow

For Vernice Petty, serving others in her community is as natural and ongoing as serving her family. In fact, to Vernice, the community is her family.

A member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Vernice was recently recognised by the City of Darebin for her 20+ years of service as president of the Northern Rebels Basketball club, and for her noteworthy contributions to the music programs of several primary schools.

Though her own 6 children have long since stopped playing basketball for the club, she volunteers her time organising twenty culturally diverse basketball teams for practice and games. What first began as a vehicle to involve and teach her own children has since evolved into a continuing way of serving the community.

She teaches primary children singing for various music performances and works as the music coach for the Sisters and Misters singing group. Originally from New Zealand and of Maori descent, Vernice is invited to sing the New Zealand National Anthem for the ANZAC dawn service in Reservoir each year.

Church community service is also important to Vernice Petty. She served a mission for her church in the Northern Territory and later taught an early morning seminary (scripture study) class for 13 years to youth ages 14-18.

Among her important roles as wife to husband, Nathan, and mother and grandmother, Vernice also contributes her time serving as president of the Heidelberg Stake (diocese) children’s organisation.

When asked why service to others has come so readily Vernice reflects, “Coming from a large family, I was taught a pattern of service by my parents that carried over into my adult life. We had a home where love and support were provided to anyone in need.”

“I saw first-hand that pattern as a young girl and have tried to create the same pattern in my own life and those of my children,” observes Vernice.

She has learned to respond to that first instinct to serve. “Otherwise,” she adds, “You’ll talk yourself out of it. If your first thought is to help, then just go with it.”

“As a young woman I memorised a scripture that has provided the foundation for my life,” says Vernice.

 “And behold, I tell you these things that ye may learn wisdom; that ye may learn that when ye are in the service of your fellow beings, ye are only in the service of your God.” Mosiah 2:17

Clearly service to her family and community is the pattern Vernice Petty follows to show her love of and faith in God.

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