This year the Mission and Outreach Team is again sponsoring a “Hat and Mitten Tree” in the narthex (lobby). We’re collecting hats, mittens, gloves, scarves, underwear, and socks in all sizes from pre-k to high school senior. (Underwear and socks go under the tree!) We’ll turn these items over to the Abilene School System.
Last Sunday I encouraged you to bring items to restock the Little Free Pantry this coming Sunday (November 11, 2018). A few needs: canned fruit, canned vegetables, canned soup, and canned meat; cereal, breakfast, and granola bars; macaroni and cheese, ramen, spaghetti (and sauce); peanut butter and jelly, crackers (especially saltine crackers—they’re good for putting peanut butter and jelly on); add water only pancake mix and syrup; and fruit snacks.
A few final encouragements: ask yourself if you would eat what you are bringing and remember that the Little Free Pantry is, well, little.
A quick thank you to everyone who brought items for the Little Free Pantry. The backup pantry that we use to stock the Little Free Pantry is filled to overflowing (we’re going to half to get more shelves). In addition to your contributions, Jenny and I were both approached with donations from people who weren’t part of the congregation today. It’s great to have the larger community involved in a mission project!
Amanda Cormack will be presiding over the blessing of our food pantry collection tomorrow. Even after we took out some items for our own Little Free Pantry the amount of remaining was staggering, as you can see in the picture below. Please note that the sacks go all the way around.
May is the month First UMC traditionally provides food and funds for the operation of the Food Pantry which helps supply food and utility funds for those less fortunate. The following is a list of the immediate needs of the food pantry:
- Baking Supplies: cake and muffin mixes, frosting, oil, flour, sugar
- Canned Foods: fruit, vegetables, soup, condiments, meat substitutes
- Cereal: hot cereal, cold cereal, cereal and breakfast bars
- Cleaning Supplies: laundry soap, dish soap, hand soap
- Paper Goods: toilet tissue, paper towels, napkins, facial tissue
- Pasta: macaroni, noodles, spaghetti
- Personal Hygiene: shampoo, conditioner, deodorant, toothpaste, toothbrushes, women’s feminine products, disposable diapers, men’s shaving supplies, hand and body lotions, and creams
- Meats: any kind of canned meat and fish, especially tuna
- Miscellaneous: peanut butter, jelly, coffee, tea, ramen noodles, rice, dry beans, crackers, juice, syrup, instant potatoes, hamburger helpers, spices, salt and pepper, jello and pudding mixes
Grocery bags (complete with a list of needs attached) will be available on Sunday mornings beginning next Sunday (April 29, 2018) and then throughout the month of May to take home with you and fill, and then return the following Sunday or to the church office during the week. This year we’ll be splitting the contributions between the community-wide Food Pantry downtown and the Little Free Pantry here at the church.
Two more things: 1. If you can bring back unused hotel toiletries, we’ll disperse those through the little free pantry. 2 If you have extra points on your West’s Country Mart cards that you would be willing to convert to a gift card and give to the church for distribution through the church office that would be very much appreciated.
Our Little Free Pantry is up and running and has already been visited. Thanks to everyone on the Mission and Outreach Team who worked on this project.
Tomorrow (Sunday, April 15, 2018), we’ll be consecrating the Little Free Pantry at both the 8:15 and the 10:30 worship services. This ministry is a joint project with the Newbern Wideawake 4-H Club.
This next Sunday (March 11, 2018) is UMCOR Sunday and we’ll be taking up a special offering. UMCOR stands for the United Methodist Committee on Relief, and it is the church’s disaster response arm. They do great work in the United States and around the world. Below is a short video about UMCOR’s work in response to the Syrian refugee crisis (which First UMC generously participated in).
The Mission and Outreach Team has decided to partner with the Newbern Wideawake 4-H club to start a little free pantry here at the church. Go to www.littlefreepantry.org if you want to learn more.
This past Sunday, after a sermon by Rev. Eduardo Bousson, we collected $2245 for Hurricane Relief in Puerto Rico. This is in addition to the $500 the Mission and Outreach Team had earmarked for the cause. That’s a total of $2745 in aid to be distributed through the Methodist Church in Puerto Rico. Thanks everyone!
Yesterday was the last Sunday to turn Serrv orders in, but there’s still time to get a Serrv Order Form turned into the church office. The deadline is Thursday, November 30, 2017.
The bad news is that reports from Puerto Rico are growing increasingly dire. The good news is that UMCOR (and other agencies) are on it. Like Texas and Florida, Puerto Rico (though not a state) is part of the United States and Puerto Ricans are United States Citizens (I mention this because only about 50 percent of those of us in the states are aware of it). I would ask you to remember Puerto Rico (and other countries as well) when you pray for Texas and Florida.