“For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you gave me clothing, I was sick and you took care of me, I was in prison and you visited me.” (Matthew 25: 35-36, NRSV)
We get lots of opportunities to live out these words of Jesus as recorded in the Gospel of Matthew, as we carry out our church’s mission to nurture love of God and love of neighbor in the world.
Last Sunday was no exception. During our announcements at the beginning of our church service, our “tag team” of Ashley Holst, Bruce Grimes, and Don Clarke asked us to help provide food, clothing, and care for the homeless in specific appeals to the congregation.
Ashley asked us to contribute Thanksgiving Gift Cards from local supermarkets for families of the Shaw Community Center. For a relatively small contribution of a $25 gift card, we can make a big difference to families who have little – maybe a favorite sweet potato pie, or whole berry cranberry sauce, or special dinner rolls, or marshmallows to top the sweet potatoes – things that we might take for granted but are luxuries for them.
Bruce asked for winter clothing for clients of Friendship Place, including gently used winter coats, hats, scarves, and gloves, as well as new socks and long underwear. These items of clothing that we might no longer need can help keep our neighbors warm over these cold winter months. He also asked us to support our Cleveland Park Church Team at the Friendship Walk to End Homelessness on November 9. The monies raised by the walk fund Friendship Place programs that help people find homes, get jobs, and reconnect with family, friends, and the community.
Don asked us to participate in our church’s annual Art Exhibit and Auction on November 16. Proceeds from the art work sold at the event go to Joseph’s House, which provides hospice care for homeless individuals. We are so fortunate to have such a caring facility in our community to help support our most vulnerable neighbors.
I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention two especially important ways to give this month: our annual Stewardship Campaign and our five-year Capital Campaign.
As I noted last Sunday, and in my last Moderator’s Memo, our annual Stewardship Campaign runs through November 24. If you have not already received the Stewardship mailing, you should find it in your mailbox soon. We hope you will carefully review the materials, including the colorful piece that highlights our activities over the past year and shows how your generous support makes possible the life and work of our church. We then ask that you thoughtfully consider what you can pledge toward our 2020 pledge goal of $261,500, a modest increase of 1.6% over last year’s goal, and return your pledge card by November 24. You can pledge with the card in the mailing, or with this online pledge card.
Our Capital Campaign, the 2nd Century Campaign: Renewing Our Foundations, was launched in June and runs through November. This campaign, with goals of raising $1 million and getting 100% participation from the congregation, focuses on our building’s infrastructure, accessibility, environmental sustainability, and mission. In a coffee hour conversation on November 17, our Board of Trustees will update us on the campaign and on current options for proposed projects.
Details about these and other outreach initiatives appear in the announcements at the end of this memo and in our church bulletin on Sunday.
During this Giving Season, I encourage us all to take to heart Pastor Ellen’s words as we begin our offertory each Sunday: “Let us each give as we are able ….”
Peace and Joy,
EVENTS & ANNOUNCEMENTS
Friendship Walks, 11/9—Join our team to help end homelessness by going to Friendship Walks 2019 and clicking “Join a Team” (“Cleveland Park Church”). You can donate whether or not you walk (10 am on the Mall)! For more info: Bruce at email@example.com.
Art Exhibit & Auction for Joseph’s House, 11/16— Join us from 5-7 pm for an Art Exhibit featuring Don Clarke, Wesley Meacombs, and other artists. The Silent Auction will raise funds for Joseph’s House (hospice care for homeless individuals), and we’ll enjoy a wine and cheese reception with live music. Questions? Dawn at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thanksgiving Gift Cards, thru 11/17— Please support the families of Shaw Community Center by purchasing a $25 gift card (Giant, Safeway, or Trader Joes) to supplement the Thanksgiving Food Baskets. We’ll collect cards by Sunday, November 17th. Questions? Ashley at email@example.com.
2nd Century Campaign Presentation and Discussion, 11/17—Our Board of Trustees will present an overview of current options for proposed projects. Please bring questions and openness to change!
Save a Life! 11/24—Join us after worship for a 30 min. workshop on bleeding control techniques led by a licensed professional. From everyday accidents to public violence, injuries with uncontrolled blood loss can end a life in minutes. Please spread the word, register, and Save a Life!
Friendship Place Winter Warmth Drive, thru 12/5—We’re collecting gently used coats, gloves, scarves, hats, and blankets (along with new socks and long underwear) for individuals in need. L-XXL sizes preferred. Donations received through Thursday, Dec. 5.
Advent Retreat, 12/7—Join Pastor Ellen from 1-5 pm for a time of spiritual restoration amidst the always hectic holiday season. RSVP: firstname.lastname@example.org.