Join us for worship in-person every Sunday at 8am and 10:30am (live-streamed at 10:30am)

The Strong, Gentle, Loving Arms of Christ

Maintain and increase outreach opportunities so that the Good News is put into action beyond our buildings

One of the goals set by the vestry for the parish is to both maintain and increase our outreach opportunities.  St. James’ has long known that our purpose is not to serve ourselves, but to serve others.  Through our acts of generosity and love, done together as a community, we literally make Christ known to others.  Whether it is a new backpack to accompany a child to school, a hot meal so that a person does not go to bed hungry, or household goods that helps a family create a sense of home, the presence of Christ is revealed through physical comfort and personal dignity. 

The suffering in our communities and our wider world is great and it would be easy to feel overwhelmed by the need.  To reserve our resources and to be most effective, St. James’ has identified two specific areas to focus on: homelessness and children.  Sadly, the two issues are often one.  When we collect school supplies for a child, that child is living in the shelter.  When we rehome a family after being on the street, that family has children.  When we hand over a plate of hot food, the hands taking that plate are often the hands of a child.

The list of what we are currently doing to try to alleviate some of the suffering in our world is impressive.  We provide meals through Sunrise Village Shelter, Sacred Space Outdoor Ministry, and Centerville Free Dining.  We provide tangible goods such as socks, coats, toothbrushes, school supplies, and backpacks.  We make it possible for two children to go to school in Kenya and we make it possible for families in the Tri-City area to move into new homes.  We bring the light of Christ to the elderly and disabled during Christmas and Easter and into the lives of children with stories and crafts into the classroom and shelter.

We do a lot, but we have not reached the capacity of our hearts or our resources.  There is room for greater involvement.  In the upcoming months, we will launch new outreach opportunities for you to get involved in or contribute to.  We will be looking at our local school districts to see how we can help the children in our communities and we will be looking at other local initiatives that support homeless children and adults.

One major opportunity we will introduce is a home building project for our neighbors in Mexico.  From May 31 through June 2, the Episcopal Churches in our county will travel south to build a house for a homeless family desperately in need of shelter.  The program is called Corazon (corazon.org), an organization that focuses on education, sustainability and housing to break the cycle of poverty and to create relationships across borders.  This is an amazing opportunity to make a difference and to work together with fellow Episcopalians and the people who will eventually call the house their home.  More information on how to be involved physically and monetarily will be forthcoming.  In the meantime, please check out the Corazon website and pray for the effort and for those in our community and beyond that are in such need.  Pray for our ability to make a difference.

Lori+