Alfred Angelo, a national bridal chain, abruptly closed around July 14, 2017, informing customers through their website and printed messages on closed storefront windows that the chain was filing bankruptcy.
Brides and their families who had not received their dresses panicked. Many of them had already paid for the dresses and for needed alterations.
Rose Ellis, a seamstress in Tulsa, Oklahoma, was picking up dresses to alter at the Alfred Angelo store in Oklahoma City when she learned the news that the bridal chain was closing that very day.
Her first thoughts were focused on the brides who were counting on their dresses for their special days. She felt she had to do something about the situation. And she did.
Rose gathered around 60 dresses in the Oklahoma City store that had been paid for and needed alterations and brought them home with her. Her goal was to complete the alterations, contact the owners of the dresses, and make sure the dresses fit properly – all at no additional charge. She was determined to do this despite the fact that she would not be compensated by Alfred Angelo.
Stephanie Huey of Oklahoma City had her bridesmaids’ Alfred Angelo dresses at the OKC store awaiting alterations. She was in a panic fearing that the dresses and her investment were irretrievable. But Rose contacted Stephanie to inform her that she had her dresses and that she would complete the alterations at no charge.
Touched by her thoughtful generosity, Stephanie assisted Rose in contacting other brides-to-be in similar circumstances and arranged for a Holiday Inn Express in OKC to provide a space where Rose could fit the wedding gowns for the Alfred Angelo customers.
“I was just dumbfounded,” Stephanie said. “I thought her good deed was just to bring the dresses back to everyone, but she was still doing all the alterations -- and for free.”
Stephanie and others whom Rose has assisted have opened a GoFundMe account to help defray her travel expenses and the cost of doing the alterations for free. At the time of the writing of this article, almost $24,000 of the $30,000 goal has been raised. *
Doesn’t the word “gracious” describe Rose Ellis?
Her selfless actions also picture the grace that God extends to you and me.
When we were “bankrupt” due to our sins and destined for destruction, God still loved us. He gave His Son to die on the cross for us so that we could be redeemed from sin and receive the gift of eternal life (Ephesians 1:7; Romans 6:23). He did this, not because we deserved it, but because He loves us (read Ephesians 2:8-9).
Because of His love and grace, God will save those who place their faith and trust in Jesus (Acts 16:30-31), turn from their sins in repentance (Acts 17:30-31), confess Jesus before men (Romans 10:9-10), and are baptized (immersed) into Christ for the forgiveness of sins (Acts 2:38). He will continue to cleanse from sin those who continue to walk in the light of His Word (1 John 1:7).
“For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 6:23).
Gracious, full of grace. God is gracious. He wants to save us – and He will, if we will only accept His offer on His terms.
-- David A. Sargent
* Information gleaned from “Seamstress from abruptly closed bridal store reunites brides with wedding gowns” by Katie Kindelan of abcnews.go.com, posted July 27, 2017
David A. Sargent