Have you ever had someone in the community say to you, in referring to Union, “For a church your size, you do ____________.”
This month, I would like to fill in the blank. “For a church your size, you do an amazing amount of missions and ministries!” How true this is!! This month, I would like to highlight some of the ministries provided by the Union family, outside the walls of our church, as well as share some new opportunities that have come our way. In this past year, as a church family:
August - We provided handmade, unique pillowcases for children who were patients at Eggleston Children’s Hospital.
September - We provided protein food items for ACTS, Area Churches Together Serving, as well as assisting in the center distributing food to those in need.
October - We packed and shipped 45 Operation Christmas Child boxes for children in other countries who would not receive a Christmas gift without our help.
November – We provided 50 boxes of food for families in need, identified through Oconee County schools. These boxes contained a turkey and all the fixins’ for a Thanksgiving meal. As they families came to pick up their boxes, they were met with smiles, assistance, and individual prayers.
January - We donated over $900 to Heifer International, specifically to provide fresh water (irrigation pumps) and new wells.
February – We donated personal care items for the women of the Safe House of Athens.
April – We collected kitchen supplies for ACTS.
June - We provided new school supplies for students in Oconee County schools.
July – We collected, packed, and began distributing Blessing Bags for needy men and women in our community.
In addition to our monthly mission projects, we also do a large Benevolence Ministry, funded by our 5th Sunday Special Offering, and we serve at ACTS every other month.
Now, we have two additional opportunities to share the love of Jesus.
The first involves working with Sparrows Nest (sparrowsnestmission.org). Their mission statement describes what they do as a “Christ-centered ministry that seeks to change lives through the power of God and nurturing relationships.” For some, that includes help with food and clothing. For some, it is a listening ear, a place of calm. We will be involved by bringing breakfast to their clients on every 5th Saturday morning during the year. Cami Allen is the chair for this ministry.
The second is our affiliation with Interfaith Hospitality Network of Athens (INHA). This is a ministry that provides temporary housing for homeless families with children. We will be joining with First Christian Watkinsville and Ashford Methodist Athens to offer one week a quarter where these families will be housed at our church. There are many opportunities of service within this ministry and during the month of August there will be training sessions offered. Patti Clark and Kelly Hansford are the chairs for this ministry.
Union Christian Church is a church family that steps outside the walls of the building, into our community, sharing the love of Jesus in many ways. Thanks be to God.