Missions

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MISSION COMMITTEE  

APRIL & MAY NEWS

HOLY JOE’S CAFÉ 

Holy Joe’s Café began as a ministry of one of our sister church, The First Congregational Church of Wallingford, CT and has now grown into its own 501c3 organization.  Quoting from their most recent press release on February 24, 2022: 

Holy Joe’s Café is seeing an urgent increase in the need for coffee and support for U.S. military chaplains in response to the Russia–Ukraine conflict.  Holy Joe’s Café has supported U.S. military chaplains since its origin at a UCC church in Wallingford, CT in 2006.  The organization provides coffee to military chaplains to help them make connections with active-duty military personnel. The simple act of providing coffee to soldiers gives chaplains a comforting way to reach out to troops and often initiates conversations that might not have occurred in the regular daily routine, giving these troops a place to talk, share concerns, and get guidance that can help keep them mentally and spiritually healthier in their work. 

 

OPERATION FRESH START – NEW BEGINNINGS 

DONATION DRIVE 

The Mission Board invites the entire congregation to join us in welcoming Operation Fresh Start— New Beginnings to our church.  This recently formed non-profit organization will be housed in the middle room of the lower level of our church as part of our community outreach program.  Operation Fresh Start was first imagined by Pawcatuck resident, Shannon DePerry, to help “foster children and adults who have aged out of the foster care system have a fresh start.  By providing household items to set up apartments for the adults, backpacks full of items for the children, and a helping hand when needed, Operation Fresh Start serves our neighbors in southeastern Connecticut.”  It has grown since its inception to help our community in many diverse ways.

Monthly Project for Operation Fresh Start

This month’s project for Operation Fresh Start is a Plant and Artisan Sale at Shannon’s home (contact the church for her address) on Saturday, May 21, from 9:00 a.m. —2:00 p.m.  She will have all types of plants and crafts for sale, and there will be a basket raffle.  You can help by stopping by to purchase some items or by donating plants or a basket for the raffle.  There are some flyers for the sale that you can put up around the neighborhood. 

Want to learn more? Please spend some time reading about the wonderful work that Operation Fresh Start—New Beginnings does by going to their Facebook page:

We have many young adults and families moving into their new houses/ apartments.  Would you like to help make their house a home? 

We are collecting items for welcome baskets filled with all those items that make a house a home:  

Tall kitchen trash cans/ bags 

Cleaning supplies 

Dinnerware 

Laundry baskets/ detergent 

Brooms dust pans 

Mops 

ETC. 

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SERRV & Earn

A WEEKLY SPECIAL FROM SERRV

FROM MAY 2nd – 11th

Receive a FREE $10.00 SERRV Gift Card on all $50.00 + orders (Promo Code: SEGC22)

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This year our church will once again be participating with the SERRV organization which helps displaced refugees trade there handcrafts for income.  By clicking on the link below a percentage of sales from your purchase(s) goes directly to help our church.  Your purchases will bene!t important work done for the refugee artisans and the spiritual work that our church provides.  Please be sure to look for the orange banner bar to appear at the top of their homepage which will specify the name of our church and the general pop-up box.  Thank you for your purchases.

Please click on the click below to direct to SERRV & Earn

U C C WESTERLY SERRV & EARN


LOOKING AHEAD

Updates coming next month!


PAWCATUCK NEIGHBORHOOD CENTER

We remain concerned about our local neighbors and can reassure you that we are still collecting donations of non-perishable food supplies for the PNC.  They have supplied a list of the most needed foods: canned meats and fish, canned soups (clam chowder, in particular), healthy cereals and oatmeal, canned fruit.  Please try to find the easy open cans, if possible.  Little cups of fruit are also great for school lunches.

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Neighbors In Need

As many of you know, our church takes pride in our involvement in the “Five for Five” donations collected yearly nationally through the UCC.  It is that time of the year for the Neighbors In Need collection, which we will be accepting through Sunday, October 31st.  Neighbors In Need supports the UCC ministries of justice and compassion with the current focus being on racial justice and refugee concerns.  You may donate with the special envelopes provided in the church or on-line.  Please make checks payable to the church but put NIN in the memo line.


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 5lb 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 

missions

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.


WHO WE 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!

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:

Gamblers Anonymous