Lifeline founder writes autobiography

Feb. 21, 2014 @ 06:15 PM

The founder and executive director of Lifeline Outreach Inc. has written her first book, an autobiography titled “An Ordinary Woman: Plus God.”

Dorothy Hunt’s book tells of the many miracles God has done at Lifeline, a homeless shelter and food pantry for women and children.

There will be a book signing at Perry Memorial Library from 1 to 5 p.m. March 1 and at Hills Music Shoppe from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. March 4.

“The book is sort of an autobiography, and it tells the progression and growth of Lifeline,” she said.

Hunt, who moved to Vance County at age five, became involved in ministry full-time when she turned 55, and she founded Lifeline in 1984.

“We have room for 12 single women and 26 mothers and children,” Hunt said of her shelter on Raleigh Road.

Lifeline is the only women’s shelter in Vance County since Heart’s Haven closed last year.

Hunt and her staff also serve food twice a week on Tuesday and Friday at 10:30 a.m. and 2 p.m.

“There are so many people in Henderson that are hungry, you would be surprised,” Hunt said.

The 86-year-old was introduced to the Christian faith when she was a teenager.

“I was 17 years old, and I had never heard anything about Jesus in my life because my dad and mom were business people and they didn’t go to church,” she said. “If they believed I didn’t know it.

“I was married at 15, and my husband and I lived in an apartment across from a lady who asked me to go to church with her. It was the first time I had ever heard the Gospel. Like a child I believed, and I went forward and received Jesus Christ as my Savior. I really believe I was born again.”

She said many of her residents were impacted by the Gospel as well.

“Most of my staff that you see out there have been residents, and some of them were drug addicts, some where alcoholics, and they got born again and they are in leadership after so many years,” she said. “It’s amazing actually.”

Hunt said she was motivated to open the shelter 30 years ago because she loves helping people.

“I’ve always had a great love for people, just people in general,” she said. “My Italian grandmother was a saint and she loved everybody and she had a great gift of hospitality. I think I really inherited that from her. It seems like I’ve always had somebody under my wing though, helping someone find a new way of living, so they don’t go back to their old ways.”

Contact the writer at smansur@hendersondispatch.com.