Changing Lives Inside and Outside the Church
Sheilah Belle “The Belle” presents Stellar Award recognition to the Virginia Aires on being nominated for Quartet Group of the Year 2020
Hampton Roads, Virginia (October 25, 2020) – The Virginia Aires, known for their impeccable harmonies and heart felt tunes having been singing together for over thirty years. They are known for putting a contemporary energy behind heartfelt messages of classic Gospel music. With a heart for the people, this legendary group continues to stretch their gifts even further in the middle of a pandemic. It is now their hope that their latest release, “Drugs are a Trick of the Enemy,” will help touch and change the lives of those who have been impacted by COVID-19.
Since the middle of March 2020, the Covid-19 pandemic has affected millions of people in some of the most unimaginable ways. With that understanding The Virginia Aires, have commissioned their music and ministry to give hope to the homeless, love for the hurting and support for those dealing with substance abuse.
It was in 2018, when the National Institute on Drug Abuse, stated that 128 people in the United States overdosed on opioids every day! Fast forward to 2020, the misuse of and addiction to opioids—including prescription pain relivers, heroin, and synthetic opioids such as fentanyl – is still a serious national crisis that affects public health as well as social and economic welfare. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that the total “economic burden” of prescription opioid misuse alone in the United States, is $78.5 billion a year, including the costs of healthcare, addiction treatment, and criminal justice involvement.
Additionally the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), states that 19.4 percent of Americans aged 12 and older reported that they had used an illegal drug within the past year and 31.9 percent admitted to having used an illegal drug in the past month. However the United States now has more than 20 million people reporting having a substance use disorder. Couple that with the COVID-19 pandemic on top of people dealing with being locked down, laid off and flooded with uncertainty, people are in need of hope, which is exactly what The Virginia Aires are ready to deliver.
The men who make up The Virginia Aires, Charles Stanley, who has been without sight for over 30 years, Kenny Halsey, Kerry Smith and Pastor Rodney Mills, all say, they want to remind the world that there is still hope! They understand, when it comes to connecting people, music is the world’s universal language as it connects people from all walks of life, regardless of what they may be going through. It allows them to express themselves in ways that words cannot. With that understanding The Virginia Aires are happy to announce their latest release, “Drugs are a Trick of the Enemy.”
Pastor Rodney “The Mailman” Mills lead singer for the group and senior pastor of Solid Rock Worldwide Outreach Ministries in Hampton Roads, Virginia wrote the song years ago. However it wasn’t until after a friend of his fell into a poisonous trap, that he felt led to share this song with the world.
“Drugs are a Trick of the Enemy”, tells the story of a friend who was a great husband, father and an employee with a steady job. One evening his friend took a ride in a boat and accidentally fell out of it, subsequently sustaining major injuries. To help subside with the physical pain, he was given a prescription for opioids. When he finished taking his prescribed doses, he wanted more. His doctor however denied his request even though his pain lingered. Unfortunately that did not stop his friend from finding a way to get more, which ultimately led to him robbing and killing a pharmacist at a drug store. Within days he was arrested and given major time behind bars. Pastor Mills says he has thought many long hours about his friend and how someone’s life can quickly change overnight.
While “Drugs are a Trick of the Enemy” addresses many of these issues, The Virginia Aires realized that, there were many others out there just like their friend. They also wanted more of a hands on approach to helping with this crisis, so they connected with several facilities, including the Indian Creek Correctional Center, in Chesapeake VA where many of the inmates are serving time for drug related charges and Deerfield Correctional Center in Capron VA, where there is an older population.
Group manager, Thomas Alexander says, “We have been ministering to the men at these facilities on Monday’s for several years and we have seen lives change for the good. We have even had altar calls which has resulted in more than thirty inmates rededicating their life to Christ.”
To further assist with the inmates and even after their release, The Virginia Aires have hired several of them to work for their construction company in an effort to help get them back on track. Alexander says, “The inmates are from all over Virginia including Richmond, Stafford and the Hampton Roads area,” and have become dependable and reliable employees.
The Virginia Aires are truly thegroup that went beyond the song,”which also delivers their classic harmonies, along with a powerful message of hope for anyone who may be going through a challenging time in their life.
Listen to “Drugs are a Trick of the Enemy” here: https://youtu.be/488upbZT3B4