By Ralphine Major

They are considered some of the most treasured pieces of our lives.  Whenever a disaster strikes, they are the one thing we hope to retrieve.  Family photos.  A talented and independent mission group called “Crosslight” is helping to provide those precious pictures for many families who might not otherwise be able to afford them.  Crosslight Photo Mission is a cooperative effort of photographers and other support team members who desire to use photography to shine God’s light in a dark world.

Recently, photographers Julie Kinder McMillan, Jon Laster, Kelly Randolph, and Steve Ellis, along with a team of 15 support members who help with the logistics, provided about 65 free portrait sessions and prints for approximately 30 different families in Kentucky.  This first event was done in conjunction with Wallace Memorial Baptist Church.  “Our mission is to serve God by serving people with the skills and talents He has given us,” Ellis said.  Crosslight gives families a gift of memories with their families at a point in their lives when they are just struggling to make ends meet.  For many, the photos taken by Crosslight members are the first pictures they have had made together as a family.  “It was a great event and we plan on more in the future,” Ellis added.  To explain their purpose and reason for doing this ministry, Crosslight references a familiar scripture in 1 Peter 4:10:  “Based on the gift each one has received, use it to serve others, as good managers of the varied grace of God” (HCSB).

“The goal of Crosslight is to use photography whenever and however we can to serve others, support ministries, and share the love of Jesus,” Ellis explained.  “This may be through family portraits or by using photography in support and promotion of various ministries across several denominations.  The possibilities are endless,” he added.

While the skilled photographers donate their talent, plans are underway for a funding drive to help with costs of the project including prints and equipment, as well as general promotional materials.  The first event to raise money and awareness took place on the Saturday after Thanksgiving.  Crosslight provided family Christmas portraits with the option of having Santa and Mrs. Claus in the picture.  The fundraiser took place at the new showroom of  Magnolia Window and Door Company on Oak Ridge Highway.

Learn more about this worthwhile mission project at or contact Crosslight at P.O. Box 6148, Knoxville, Tennessee 37914, (865)544-8829, to help this group continue giving the gift of memories!