Linnell Jones-McKenney Appointed Director of The Salvation Army Flint’s L.I.F.E. Center
The Salvation Army Flint L.I.F.E Center just had an exciting addition to their team: Linnell Jones-McKenney was appointed as Executive Director. McKenney has been an advocate for Flint for many years and has had a dynamic career that took her overseas and back. Her main passion is inspiring and motivating young people.
She started out in Flint, which is why she is so passionate about its community. As a child she took advantage of new school gyms made possible by generous philanthropists. She went on to be a professional basketball player, before there were even Women’s leagues. Now her greatest passion is helping young people through community programs.
“I knew as a child, from the age of 8 years old, that I would be working with young people,” she said. “At the age of 6 years old, I knew that God had something special for me to do.”
She has now been working with youth for over 40 years and even created her own youth program: School of Champions, as well as a self-organized program called The New Direction Program.
Jones-McKenney began working in full-time ministry for The Salvation Army L.I.F.E Center in Beecher in February 2023. Within this role she oversees all programs, activities and events. It is the ideal opportunity for her to help Flint’s youth overcome poverty and share the love of Jesus with them. She explained how it came about:
“The past few years, I’ve been feeling that heavy call again. Salvation Army’s Major Randy Hellstrom reached out to me last year. We would be at the YMCA talking about basketball, talking about the Lord. Early last year, he told me ‘Hey, we’re going to have this new building. We want to be more impactful in the Beecher Community.’ I was advising him on how. Then, the opportunity presented itself and I felt like it was God calling me into ministry.”
Though she is doing similar things as her previous roles, all her work at The L.I.F.E center is oriented towards bringing Christ to the young people, their families and the community.
The Center, previously called The Salvation Army Flint Corps, will now be called the L.I.F.E Center (An acronym for Living Intentionally for Excellence). A large number of services and resources are offered through the center, free to the Beecher community including tutoring, basketball, arts, dance, mentoring in skilled trades and mental health organizations.
*Children create beautiful artwork at the L.I.F.E. Center
There is also a “dinner church” from 5-7 p.m. on Sundays where attendees can enjoy a dinner, hear speakers and have table talk. Open basketball takes place afterwards for anyone interested. There will be a reopening of the center in April to let the community know about all the programs.
It is inspiring to see the growth of the L.I.F.E center and Linnell Jones-McKenney’s passionate involvement will undoubtably be a great blessing to the Beecher community. If you would like to be a part of advancing the L.I.F.E Center’s mission, you can donate or volunteer.