Thursday, March 31, 2016

Appalachia Service Project - Trip Update

Our Appalachia Service Project mission team arrived safely in Brenton, West Virginia yesterday evening. The group carpooled down in three vans and stopped for a picnic lunch at the West Virginia border.

Once they arrived they
had a nice dinner and got a chance to meet with the staff at the Guyan Valley Center. Our missionaries will be working as four separate work crews on four separate sites during their time there.

The group will get a chance to meet with the families they will be serving today. Everyone is looking forward to getting to know them and to beginning their important work.

Let us continue to pray for a successful mission trip for our team.

We will provide updates to our blog and to our Facebook page as often as we can. Be sure to check back for the latest information.

Saturday, March 19, 2016

Local Missions: Serve with your Small Group

“Our Group feels strongly about the need to serve others, to reach out and give of ourselves to help those who are trying to change their direction of life.” Roger Smith Sr., Nativity Small Group Member

Roger Smith and his Nativity Small Group knew they wanted to come together to serve their local community. Roger’s group consists of 9 men who have been meeting for about a year and a half- the core group members have been together for even longer.

The group’s call to service lead them to Our Daily Bread, a Catholic Charities residential program that provides education and training as well as recovery support to formerly homeless men in the Baltimore area. After figuring out logistics (coordinating schedules, requesting time off of work, etc.), Roger’s group picked a date in December to serve.

The group was tasked with serving dinner to the permanent residents at Our Daily Bread. There are approximately 30 permanent male residents living there at a given time. Roger and his team were in charge of setting the dining tables and they formed an assembly line to dish out plates of hot food and offer a friendly greeting to each resident.

Once the meals were served, the group had the opportunity to sit and socialize with the men. “The men seemed to enjoy our company and were most appreciative of our outreach to them. We felt that this was an excellent mission project for our group and we were greatly rewarded for our time and energy.”

The experience even worked to bring an already close small group even close to one another. “We all gained a greater understanding of the personal rewards of serving others less fortunate than ourselves. How our team approached meeting a goal provides a feeling of great accomplishment and brought our group even closer in spiritual feeling.”

Roger and his group enjoyed the experience so much that they scheduled another time to serve dinner at Our Daily Bread this month.

Click here for information on how to get your Small Group involved in local missions.

Sunday, March 6, 2016

Partner Spotlight: Araminta Freedom Initiative

“I freed a thousand slaves. I could have freed a thousand more if only they knew they were slaves.” Harriet Tubman

Following the legacy of abolitionist Harriet Tubman, our local partner, Araminta Freedom Initiative’s work is founded on God’s call to justice, articulated specifically in Isaiah 61:1, which compels us to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners. Grounded in the belief that every person is created in the image of God, they provide assistance to victims of trafficking regardless of their religious beliefs, ethnicity, sexual orientation, or gender.

Their mission is to awaken, equip, and mobilize the Church and our community to dismantle child sex trafficking in our region. To engage in prevention, intervention and survivor services that bring healing and wholeness. To challenge each individual to recognize their personal contribution to a culture that distorts human dignity and worth.

Volunteers with Araminta engage in four areas: prevention of the sexual exploitation of minors, systemic economic deterrence of the business of human trafficking, intervention and rescue of those held against their will, and the provision of aftercare initiatives that provide healing and wholeness to victims.

Araminta welcomes everyone to join them on their journey towards a more just world. Click here for more information and to get involved.