Mt. Olive, Hickory, busy with many projects
Mt. Olive, Hickory, was quite busy with several different activities over the “God’s work. Our hands.” weekend.
Salem, Lincolnton, located in a rural section of Lincoln County, and its sister congregation of Salem United Church of Christ, are unique in that they remain a “union” church; each holding worship weekly. The Lutheran congregation worship attendance now averages fewer than 25 each week, while the UCC congregation is even smaller. Nevertheless, these small congregations together accomplished a great fete when they hosted their empty pottery bowl benefit for “God’s work. Our hands.” Sunday, on August 25.
Four congregations joined forces for an ecumenical “God’s work. Our hands” pack-a-thon: Friedens Lutheran Church, Gibsonville; Low’s Lutheran Church, Liberty; Gibsonville United Methodist Church, Gibsonville; and Mt. Pleasant United Methodist Church, Greensboro. The four churches raised enough money and volunteers to buy, pack, and send 20,160 meals to the needy around the world through Feed the Hunger. The 129 packers celebrated the end of their time of service together with a hot dog supper.
Story shared by Pastor Bill Zima.
Epiphany, Winston-Salem, had a very busy “God’s work. Our hands.” weekend. On Saturday, they cooked and served meals at Ronald McDonald House, and also helped on a new construction build with Habitat for Humanity.
Thanks to all those who contributed to our “God’s work. Our hands,” project making Good Samaritan Bags for Hesed House.
Story shared by Pastor Tommy Lineberger.
Beth Eden, Newton, participated in “God’s work. Our hands.” Sunday with four projects. We packed over 100 health kits for Lutheran World Relief. We had a group of volunteers that packed food bags for our cooperative ministry (Eastern Catawba County Cooperative Christian Ministries) at one of their warehouses. We had a group of volunteers stock the pantry at our local soup kitchen (The Corner Table). And, we had a group go to North Newton Elementary School for a blessing where they met with the principal and walked around the school. They also delivered items collected during worship by
For St. Andrew’s, Hickory, “God’s work. Our hands.” Day of Service on September 8 was a day of hard work and lots of fun and fellowship. St. Andrew’s members and guests took a lot of pride in the help that we could give to people and agencies in our community. We are very pleased to announce the tremendous success we had:
“God’s work. Our hands.” Sunday was celebrated at Prince of Peace, Greensboro, by first recognizing and praying for all students and educators. We also kicked off Sunday School. Following worship, we shared a potluck meal together. After our fellowship meal, we worked on pruning/mulching trees on the campus that we share with the Urban Teaching Farm, along with planting seeds in one of the gardens. Thank you to Farm Manager Lilly for her guidance with this project!
Story shared by Cheryl Pressley.
Stirred by God the Spirit, the folks of St. John’s, Cherryville, headed out in joyful service for “God’s work. Our hands.” Sunday! We have been in partnership with Heritage Oaks Assisted Living Nursing Center in Gastonia in the past, bringing clothes and other materials, and had noticed a desperate need for slippers and bedroom shoes.
On “God’s work. Our hands.” Sunday, the members of Good Shepherd Lutheran Church, Mt. Holly, worked on three different service projects that impacted our local town. The first was working with the Red Cross through their Sound The Alarm program which installs smoke detectors to those who don’t have them and need them. During the afternoon hours, we knocked on 68 doors and installed 23 detectors in 15 homes. We were accompanied by the Mt. Holly Fire Department, who made sure folks also had detectors that worked.
St. Andrew, Mount Airy, is a small, but active, congregation. We do a great deal of outreach in the community every month. On Tuesday evenings, we serve a meal at our downtown mission location. We always wear our “God’s work. Our hands.” t-shirts to let our Neighbors in Need (and everyone else) know what we’re all about. We get a lot of compliments on the shirts.
For the last two years, Ascension, Shelby has extended “God’s work. Our hands.” across an entire weekend. On Saturday, September 7, volunteers worked inside and outside the church property. The sanctuary got a deep cleaning, new mulch was laid, and the second floor, newly re-carpeted, was readied for meeting and classroom use.
For Morning Star, Matthews, “God’s work. Our hands.” was a weekend-long celebration for us as we reached across the generations and beyond our walls to connect with our community.
In 2016, Holy Cross, Mocksville, set the date for the document shredding truck from COR365 to come to Holy Cross this September. (Yes, it took three years to be on their schedule.) We were fortunate because they are no longer doing this as a community service since recycled paper value is low. We did newspaper and word-of-mouth publicity. We also had a large sign at the church all week advertising the shredding event. We raised over $750 toward our 2020 Relay for Life team goal. The photo includes two COR365 employees as well as Holy Cross members: Pastor Kelly Moore, Joe and Cindy Valliere, Donna
Grace Lutheran Church, Washington, is a small but mighty congregation. In years past for “God’s work. Our hands.” Sunday, we have gone to our local food bank, Eagles Wings, and painted. This year so that more of our elderly congregation members could participate, we did something different. This year we decided to give a gift that keeps on giving. We collected small stuffed animals such as teddy bears and then, on Sunday, we delivered them to our local fire department. They will be given to children when an emergency such as a house fire or car accident occurs. This
In 2015, Pastors Lauren and Paul Carlson were called as co-pastors to Calvary, Morganton, where they would share one call, 50/50. Today, they’re still serving at Calvary and they’re still sharing one call, but now Pastor Paul is three-quarters time and Pastor Lauren is one-quarter time, but that’s not the only thing that has changed. Some of the members, who have worshiped at the 78-year-old congregation for many years, now look around the worship space and only recognize about half the congregation which has an average worshiping attendance of 120. There’s a new level of energy and excitement at
“The kingdom of God is a bunch of outcasts and oddballs gathered at a table,” Rachel Held Evans wrote, “not because they are rich or worthy or good, but because they are hungry, and because there’s always room for more.” Held Evans, a 37-year-old best-selling Christian author, tragically died this spring after initially being hospitalized for the flu. The table seemed to be a theme throughout Held Evans’ writing. She was always quick to note that we are not the ones to set the table or prepare the feast. It’s already been given. We simply are invited to pull up a chair and dig in.
Both Hurricane Matthew in October 2016 and Hurricane Florence in September 2018 flooded Cathy Farmer’s home in Princeville, N.C. (the first African American incorporated town in the U.S.), forcing Cathy, her terminally ill daughter, and two grandchildren out of her home. During Hurricane Matthew, the four were rescued from the flood waters. Since then, Cathy and her family have been mobile, staying with friends and family members. Cathy’s daughter recently passed away.