I have known Lonnie for over 10 years. He has invested, equipped and encouraged me in my walk with Christ. He has been a true friend and mentor through the highs and lows of my personal and NASCAR life. Showing by action he displayed what it looks like to authentically live out your faith.
NASCAR Cup Series Driver
The First Responders 1st Story
First Responders 1st was started in January of 2018 by Lonnie Clouse. Lonnie previously served for 17 years as a chaplain to the NASCAR community with Motor Racing Outreach. As the 2017 season came to a close, MRO announced a significant downsizing due to lack of funding, causing his chaplaincy role to be eliminated. Shocked and discouraged, Lonnie began to question his purpose and calling in ministry.
Lonnie stumbled on a book by Craig Groeschel entitled “Chazown” that had a huge impact on his life. In his book Groeschel encourages his readers to do something for a living that they have a passion for and would do for free. That’s when the alarm bells went off in his mind. He had been serving with the Charlotte Mecklenburg Police Department as a volunteer chaplain for the past 2 years, and he loved being involved in the lives of these officers. After much prayer and counsel from trusted advisors, the Lord confirmed to Lonnie that he needed to start his own ministry (non-profit) for First Responders to provide emotional and support for those who are on the front lines serving and protecting our communities.