One of the things Tom and I really enjoy about attending Lewis Center UMC, the church we attend when we are in Ohio, is how mission minded they are. Lewis Center is filled with people who are really trying to make a difference in their community. The church’s motto is “Real Life, Real Impact” and they live that out in the ways they volunteer.
Every week the bulletin is full of mission minded opportunities. This last week you could sign up for the American Red Cross Blood Drive or order UMW Christmas Cookie trays. Children can go to a special Christmas choir practice that will perform at several area nursing homes. A business group, called “Love Thy Neighbor” meets weekly to talk about ways for businesses to have a Christian influence. Alpha Recovery, hosting elections, and a Grief Support group are ways the church building is open to the community.
Lewis Center partners with Church for All People by preparing and serving breakfast once a month. This next Sunday they will donate 200 Operation Christmas Child Shoeboxes. The UMW collects blankets for local children in difficult circumstances. Every summer they send out youth mission teams, some local, some in the US, and some international. Before a ministry is launched at Lewis Center, they ask the question “How will this influence or serve the people around us?”
Right now a big push at Lewis Center is for the People In Need Ministry in Delaware County. In October the mission minded people at church donated 270 pounds of food to People In Need. During November they are collecting coats, hats, and gloves that will be given away at the Holiday Clearing House. Church members are also encouraged to work at the Clearing House event the second weekend in December.
I find the People In Need program very interesting. It is locally run and funded. They help the working poor of Delaware County with food and emergency assistance. People in Need provides assistance with the an immediate need and takes a look at the total needs of the family unit. Then they work with the family or individual to identify appropriate referrals, using all available community resources.
The Holiday Clearing House is a huge event. I got some idea of its scope when they showed a video during worship at Lewis Center. You can watch the video by clicking here. Be sure you watch through all the people in fast motion moving stuff in and all the people moving stuff out. What a wonderful way to help people and make a difference in the lives of people.
Tom and I are trying to get more involved in this church. I miss being part of a church family. We plan on working at the distribution set up during one of the days in December. How are you giving back for all you have received this holiday season?