Missions

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MISSION COMMITTEE NEWS 

DECEMBER NEWS

“Back to Basics” 

Decorate our Mission Tree 

This year, more than any other in recent history, too many families in our local communities are suffering from lack of the basic necessities: food, fuel, and housing.  In light of that, our Mission Holiday Drive for November and December is focused on going Back to the Basics. 

We are planning to conduct this drive in a manner similar to last year’s Decorate the Mission Tree for the Homeless.  For every $5 donation you make a colored ornament will be placed on our Mission Holiday Tree. 

Red ornaments: Fuel Assistance 

Silver ornaments: Housing Support 

Gold ornaments: Food Assistance 

We are asking that all donations be made by Sunday, December 20th.  All donations will be sent to the Johnnycake Center this year. 

You may place your donations by mailing them to our church.  Please mark them “Mission Holiday Drive” and be sure to indicate which basic necessity you would like to support.  To keep everyone safe this year, only members of the Mission Board will place the ornaments on the tree. 

We thank you in advance for making this the most beautiful Mission Holiday Tree we have ever decorated!!!

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 W.A.R.M Center Monthly Meal

For years we have provided a monthly meal to the clients of the WARM Center.  Over the past few years we have worked with Stonington Pizza Palace to create the Dine-to-donate event to raise the funds for the monthly WARM Center monthly meal.  However, due to the pandemic (COVID-19) the Mission Board have decided to ask for monetary donations.  Our goal is $1200 and we ask for your help to reach this goal.  Please send your checks directly to the church with the notation that the funds will go to the WARM Dinner Mission. 

 And as always the W.A.R.M Center would greatly appreciate a monetary donation.  If you would like to donate directly to WARM, you may do so directly on their web page: www.warmcenter.org 

PNC

(Pawcatuck Neighborhood Center)

Although our official holiday drive will benefit the Jonnycake Center this year, we ask that you not forget the Pawcatuck Community Center, which is also doing a stellar job in supporting our neighbors in need.  They are accepting non-perishable food and living closet donations during the week and monetary donations by mail or through their web site.  Your Missions Committee is doing the best we can to spread our thinner-than-usual resources over the community this year.  Remember that you can always donate to other organizations through their web sites and Facebook pages. 

 Looking Ahead 

Anticipating the increased threat of food insecurity during the winter months ahead, we will be accepting the challenge to supplement the local food pantries by having the largest food drive we have sponsored since our Fill the Pews events.  During January and February we will be Filling the Altar (and hopefully some of those pews that we can’t use due to COVID) with as much non-perishable food as possible.  While you are stocking your own pantries in preparation for possible food shortages this winter, please consider throwing some extras in your cart for this event.  We are NOT collecting food now but will be starting the first of the year.  Plan ahead!! 


PAWCATUCK NEIGHBORHOOD CENTER

An Important Note From PNC!!!

To purchasers when purchasing any items to donate to the PNC:  By law the staff is not permitted to open and subdivide any donated packages.  Therefore, the larger packages of toilet tissue and paper towels must be given in entirety to just one family, while another might receive just a roll or two.  Purchasing smaller packages of toilet tissue or a roll or two of paper towels is much more practical. This also applies to donated foods.  A 5 pound bag of rice can be given to just one family and cannot be subdivided.

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THINK BEFORE YOU DONATE

“… 46 million Americans rely on food pantries and soup kitchens . . . to survive!  That’s 1 in 7 of our nation’s citizens who need assistance to ensure they eat three meals a day.

People who are food insecure often do not have healthy diets. In many low-income areas, grocery stores are not readily accessible and fresh produce is too expensive.  So their diets are often made up of readily available convenience store and fast food fare, which can lead to obesity, as well as costly and debilitating diseases.

To make matters worse, most of the food we donate to food drives is GARBAGE.  We offload the dusty cans from the back of our kitchen cabinets, items that we have chosen not to eat.  The nonperishables we give are often laden with fat, salt, and sugar.

We need not spend more to donate healthy food.  A can of tuna in water is the same cost as a can of tuna in oil — but it’s much better for us.  Whole wheat pasta is much healthier than sodium-packed Top Ramen.  Swap sugary cereals for whole grains.  Give the food you would feed your family.  THINK BEFORE YOU DONATE is designed to change our habits.  And to get YOU inspired to host a healthy food drive . . .”

Our Mission Committee has committed to following the guidelines of the Think Before You Donate movement.  In the past we have based our food collections on requests from the PNC.  Although the PNC appreciates most non-perishable food donations, we are encouraging our congregation to donate healthier options.

Please click on the link below, to view or print the THINK BEFORE YOU DONATE informational sheet:


EQUAL EXCHANGE

 Don’t forget that the cute red cabinet just inside the door of Fellowship Hall holds a treasure trove of Equal Exchange items that you can purchase each week.  Buy some excellent organic chocolate bars, cocoa, coffee, tea, etc. and realize that you are helping the world’s needy population in the process. 


The Mission of the PNC

The Pawcatuck Neighborhood Center helps to feed Westerly residents too.  To encourage donations anytime, one Red Bucket will remain in the Bell Courtyard area of the narthex.

A reminder that we continue to collect non-perishable food for humans and their fluffy, furry friends in our Mission red tubs.  Feel free to contribute canned goods any Sunday.  The need is so great!  All contents are taken periodically to the PNC.

Also, by law when purchasing any items to donate to the PNC the staff is not permitted to open and subdivide any donated packages.  Therefore, the larger packages of toilet tissue and paper towels must be given in entirety to just one family, while another might receive just a roll or two.  Purchasing smaller packages of toilet tissue or a roll or two of paper towels is much more practical.  This also applies to donated foods.  A 5 pound bag of rice can be given to just one family and cannot be subdivided.

Thanks for all your help!  Please speak to any member of the Missions Committee with your ideas and questions.


Fair Trade 

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New Fair Trade Items Available In Fellowship Hall

We have a self-serve cabinet in Fellowship Hall of assorted Fair Trade items for sale.  Delicious chocolate bars, baking chocolate, coffees, teas, and more are all available for purchase.  Just put your money in the can! 

Decaf Flavored Coffee
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Usual Favorites

Flavored Coffees

Chocolate Bars

Teas

A list of prices is posted on the door of the red cabinet.


WE NEED YOUR HELP!!!

An important ministry of our church is the need for people power and that means you!  Please consider helping out with this important monthly commitment that our church serves!

Coffee Hour Hosts:  Sign-up sheet in Fellowship Hall.  You can just do the coffee.  You can also provide goodies, or not.  You can just clean up.  But we need everyone to help in some way!  Coffee hour is a critical time when visitors and friends get to know how wonderful our church is and if it doesn’t happen it makes us look bad to any visitors we may have that day.  It’s just not fair that the Deacons have to scramble to do it almost every Sunday.  So, won’t you please sign up for one Sunday?  Talk with Lynn Murray for more details.

We serve locally and around the world.  We support:

Equal Exchange Fair Trade Products

Church World Service & SERRV

The Westerly Area Rest and Meals (WARM) Center

Pawcatuck Neighborhood Center (PNC)

We sponsor and support:

Alcoholics Anonymous

Gamblers Anonymous