Christ in the Community
Thanks be to God for all the volunteers from Laughlin Memorial, Newlyn Street, Mt. Zion AME and all who contributed financially to our Tornado Relief Effort! We even received contributions by mail from Little Rock, AR!
We (Laughlin Memorial UMC) carried out our effort for two weeks. During the first week, we were without electricity and telephones, but our congregation wanted to do something. It began by working with our District Vitality Specialist, Rev. Maria King, and helping coordinate meal deliveries to some sites devastated by the storm.
During the week, our parking lot was used as a staging area for the utility trucks working in the area and on Thursday as a distribution site for goods, food, and water destined for the families and students of Bessemer Elementary School. On Sunday afternoon, a week after the storm, we hosted a community dinner after church feeding an estimated 150 people! On Monday, we began receiving and distributing cleaning products, personal hygiene items, food, clothing and school supplies.
School supplies were delivered to Bessemer for use by the students there and for sharing with Reedy Fork and Alamance Elementary which received students from the schools unable to continue. The Northwest Guilford Missional Network (Center, Bethany, Bethel, Flat Rock, Gethsemane, Glencoe, Mt. Zion, Oak Ridge, Summerfield –Peace, Morehead and Stokesdale) along with Jason Boggs, Director of Camp GuilRock, prepared and delivered 500 meals to tornado victims at Willow Oaks Community Center, Gethsemane Missionary Baptist Church, and New Jerusalem Cathedral on Phillips Ave. We also received contributions from Collins Grove, Proximity, and Mt. Vernon United Methodist Churches and Mt. Zion AME Church.
By Thursday of the second week, our traffic had slowed significantly, so the decision was made to discontinue this effort. The remaining items have been distributed to other sites where they can be used. Though this effort is completed, the job is not done. We will be active in other ways to help the people of our community, letting them know that Christ IS in the Community.
Resources for Vital Congregations
GBHEM Leadership Resources
A Disciple’s Path; A Guide for United Methodist
RESOURCES TO CONNECT WITH THE COMMUNITY:
The Appalachian District Church Vitality Team has been prayerfully seeking ways to help support you and the ministries of your local congregation during this COVID-19 pandemic. Together they have diligently researched and connected with others throughout the conference and our denomination to identify resources and offer them to you. We hope they will be helpful to you and bless you greatly in leading your churches and communities through this unprecedented time. We are very grateful to the District Vitality Team and other contributors for their great work on this resource.
This faithful team has created three documents, two of which you are receiving today. They include:
- Family Home Worship – designed to help families establish a regular worship space within their homes as well as a time where they can worship together.
- Tech Strategies – to help guide you in selecting effective tools and resources within your budget to best communicate in the digital world.
We believe these resources will be of great benefit to you. Also know that the District Vitality Team is available to answer any questions you might have in regards to the documents attached. If you have questions, you may email Rev. Howard Fleming at email@example.com.