Event Date: November 12, 2022
Location: Hilton Americas-Houston
Beneficiary: Interfaith Ministries of Greater Houston
No. of Attendees: 550
Money Raised: $665,000
Chairpersons: Dr. Kathy Flanagan, Mayor Sylvester Turner, Paula Sutton and Bill Gross
Honorees: Houston Methodist, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, Dr. Stephen L. Klineberg, and Laurence J. “Larry” Payne
Emcee: Channel 13’s Melanie Lawson
Photography: Terry Thomas, Jr.
Interfaith Ministries’ Tapestry Gala Was “Draped” in Inspiration
Hilton Americas-Houston’s ballroom was the seat of inspiration as Interfaith Ministries of Greater Houston celebrated its mission of dialogue, collaboration and service at its annual Tapestry Gala with more than 550 supporters raising over $665,000 to assist in its efforts. Chairpersons Dr. Kathy Flanagan, Mayor Sylvester Turner, Paula Sutton and Bill Gross were overjoyed with the turnout.
Channel 13’s news anchor Melanie Lawson welcomed guests and brought a group to the stage for a moving multi-faith shared prayer. A delectable multi-course dinner was served to the audience’s delight and the lively entertainment kept them engaged. A short break after the meal gave attendees a chance to bid on valued sports memorabilia in the silent auction area, which was sponsored by Alan Helfman and River Oaks Chrysler Jeep Dodge Ram.
Melanie then welcomed IM President & CEO Martin B. Cominsky to the stage to give gratitude to the gala chairs, committee members Nadia Tajalli and Philamena Baird and honorees Houston Methodist (who announced a $100,000 gift), The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, Dr. Stephen L. Klineberg, and Laurence J. “Larry” Payne. Jiffy Lube President Edward Hymes spoke about the partnership between Shell USA and the organization, and stated his knowledge of their good works was first-hand, as he had helped deliver Meals on Wheels with Mr. Cominsky.
Gala sponsors were Shell USA (Presenting Sponsor), Susan & Dan Boggio, Brigitte & Bashar Kalai, Karyn & Charles Crisp, EOG Resources, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Houston Area, H-E-B, Barbara D. Mackey & Jim Ferrendelli, MD, Houston Methodist, Dr. Kathy C. Flanagan & Mayor Sylvester Turner, Charlene Chuang, The Marek Family, Frost Bank, Susanne and Randall Evans, Dr. Vasant Garg and Dr. Kim Tran, Marlene Marker, Dr. Marilyn Stovall, Paula Sutton and Bill Gross and Ambassador and Mrs. Arthur Schechter, and TRIO Community Meals. Also, during the evening program, Martin Cominsky announced that Sysco had committed $100,000.
A poignant moment of inspiration occurred as diners found a multi-colored, woven bracelet at their place setting, which was a table favor made in honor of Tapestry honoree Laurence J. “Larry” Payne. He chose this item because it evoked the image of a tapestry—different threads brought together by a weaver—a beautiful artifact giving a new perspective. Payne’s hope is that the bracelets remind everyone that threads in a tapestry are equal in value and each one is important.