The Littells are a humble family. Their beautiful service and ministry happens quietly but the impact has been profound. They have brought hope and the love of Jesus to many through their selfless sacrifices of time, talents and treasures. Many do not even know that this family is responsible for the help they received in times of need.
The Littells have been supporters of Anchorpoint Counseling Ministry for more than thirty years, beginning as volunteers for the former used book sale when the sale was held at North Hills Village. The family also provides financial support through United Way and annual gifts. “There are few organizations that can strengthen families like Anchorpoint,” says John, who has served on Anchorpoint’s Board of Directors. Joy has also served at Anchorpoint as a tutor and for the book sale.
The Littells have moved to the Pittsburgh area no less than three times. John, a native of the state of Indiana, came in the 1970s fresh out of Indiana University. Joy came to Pittsburgh from Hershey when the Littells married in 1979. A twenty-five year career with PPG Industries brought them back to Pittsburgh from Louisiana and California in 1982, and then from Italy in 1991. A professional in Logistics, John left PPG in 1991 and applied his experience with the Christian humanitarian organization, World Vision. He began his work with World Vision as a volunteer, followed by ten years on the staff at the Gifts-in-Kind distribution center in Sewickley. His work there provided materials to fight poverty in the U.S. and worldwide, and included relief efforts on the ground in Sri Lanka following the Tsunami of 2004.
For many years Joy has had a special ministry for children serving in various ways including but not limited to: the Christian Education Team at Heritage Church, as a Sunday school teacher, various positions with Vacation Bible School including the director, and the LOGOS after school program. She also served as the Children’s Director for Community Bible Study. Her calling to education goes beyond children. She has volunteered to organize many women’s retreats and facilitated various Bible and book studies.
The Littell family includes four children, all North Allegheny graduates. The eldest, Doug is employed with Adventures by Disney, where he has hosted family trips in the United States, Europe and South America. He and his wife Ally, are parents to Jack and reside in Ventura, California. Daughter Katie is employed with the Loudoun County (Virginia) Schools in Leesburg, teaching high school English. Son, Nick, is also employed with Walt Disney in resort management at Orlando Florida, and son, Gregory, is in the final year of a five year degree program in Urban Planning at the University of Cincinnati.
The apples didn’t fall far from the tree with the Littell children. From a young age they began serving alongside their parents and then on their own as teen helpers with Vacation Bible School, the LOGOS after school program, work days and more. As older teens they also traveled on mission trips and now as young adults bring this commitment to serve others to their professions and the communities in which they live.
They consider among their family the congregation of Heritage Presbyterian Church in Franklin Park where they have ministered and been ministered to for more than thirty years. With the youth of Heritage, both John and Joy traveled to Mexico, and in 2014 they traveled together to Africa in partnership with Heritage’s sister church in Bangwe, Malawi.
If asked, John and Joy would say that the gifts of faith and family have been God’s greatest blessing to them. Their support of Anchorpoint is one way they try to help pass those blessings on to others.