SPC has been involved in a collaborative community outreach for the homeless for the past several years. The Mission Committee still wants to help but we must change the way we participate due to COVID. We have mission money already budgeted to pay for the rooms at a local motel. This year we are asking for donations of food gift cards from the congregation.
Here is a list of places: Food Lion and Publix (on the island), Dominoes, Oak Island Restaurant, BBQ House, Oak Island Sub Shop, and Pizza Shack. These places either deliver or are within reasonable walking distance of the motel, so clients won’t need to worry about transportation. We are suggesting $20 per card and will collect cards at three locations: the church, (offering plate in the narthex), Julia Hill’s in St. James and Laura Cacchione’s on Oak Island. Collections will end Sunday, January 24,2021. SPC will still make a difference in the Winter Sheltering Program!
SPC members’ generosity was abundant this Christmas Season, making wishes come true for six families, including six adults and 10 children. The project co-chairs, Julia Hill and Sue Meyer, work closely with Southport Elementary to identify and adopt these families. Each year they are given names of families that are in need. The concept is unique in two very special ways. First, SPC adopts the entire family, not just the children at the school. All members of the family are included. Secondly, these families are adopted for an entire year, including remembering them with gifts on birthdays, holidays and back to school time. Many thanks to the committee and all those who helped make our Angel Tree wishes come true this Christmas!
Mission Outreach is participating in the seventh annual “Christmas at the Food Pantry….A Wonderful Wal-Mart Christmas!” Each food pantry client will receive a gift card when they come in for their food during the month of December. The requested donation is a $15 Wal-Mart gift card with the receipt included. Gift cards can be dropped off at the following members’ homes: Julia Hill (St. James), Sue Meyer (Bolivia area), Bob Lambert( Southport ) and Laura Cacchione (Oak Island). November 30, 2020 is the final day for this collection. Gift cards can also be dropped off or mailed to the Church Office.
The Mission Ministry put together 23 Covid -19 Kits for clients of the Food Pantry who are receiving home delivery of the bi-weekly groceries. The bags were decorated by several of our children from church, and each bag contains Clorox Wipes, paper towels, hand sanitizer, face mask and Life Savors. A sticker with the words “With love from Southport Presbyterian Church” was placed on each bag. As we collect more Clorox Wipes the committee will make more kits for distribution. The Mission Ministry is so grateful to have the opportunity to reach out to our community during this time of need.
The Mission Committee invites volunteers to make sandwiches in their own home for distribution the week of August 3. Volunteers completed two weeks of our “Lunch Bag Mission” at the Food Pantry. For three days in June and three days in July volunteers made 320 bag lunches that were distributed to the clients of the Food Pantry. They were surprised and delighted by this special treat. If you would like to volunteer to make sandwiches in your own home for this mission, please contact Laura Cacchione at email@example.com or (910) 685-4861.
A letter from The Rev. Dr. Diane Givens Moffett, President and Executive Director Presbyterian Mission Agency
Dear Friends in Christ, You are in my prayers as we navigate the disaster of this unprecedented COVID-19 pandemic. I know most people are feeling the impact — health-wise, financially, emotionally. Our lives have been turned upside down in the span of just a few short weeks. Please know that the PC(USA) is with you in spirit. With God’s help, we will get through this together. Every day, I hear stories from around the Church of how people are suffering and how their lives have been devastated. Unemployment, sickness, parents who are thrust into the role of teacher or caregiver, the rise in racism against the Asian community, the amount of deaths, including the disproportionate death rates experienced by people of color and those already living on the margins — all have been catastrophic. In some communities, churches are barely making ends meet. They’re facing the reality of running out of money. They worry about how they’re going to pay their bills — much less support a pastor or provide critical services in their neighborhoods. Presbyterian Disaster Assistance (PDA) is here to help — again In the PC(USA), we are blessed that Presbyterian Disaster Assistance, our disaster response ministry, is already at work with presbyteries and its network of partners to rush critical aid to those who are suffering as a result of COVID-19. Thanks to the longstanding generosity of the whole Church, through gifts to One Great Hour of Sharing and other gifts from generous Presbyterians and congregations, PDA is providing vital provisions where needed — food and water, hygiene and sanitation supplies, training and more. The unprecedented nature of COVID-19 draws into focus the core commitments of our General Assembly’s Matthew 25 foci — to eradicate systemic poverty, end structural racism and support congregational vitality. Therefore, PDA is also providing ministry continuation funding through our Matthew 25 commitment to support congregations who work with and draw from communities of people already experiencing the impact of poverty, racism or other forms of oppression. If you are able, please help us Give, Act and Pray now. GIVE: •Support Presbyterian Disaster Assistance’s emergency response and long-term recovery work as well as ministry continuation funding for congregations experiencing great needs during COVID-19 by making a gift today. Designate gifts to E052197 – Matthew 25. • You can also give by phone at (800) 872-3283. ACT: • Wash your hands and stay at home. While we value the ministry of presence, currently the best way to care for others is to observe good hygiene and physical distancing. • Celebrate the life-sustaining, generous engagement of congregations across the nation who are serving communities made more vulnerable by COVID-19’s impact on their lives. • Repudiate the hateful, racist actions and expressions that have targeted siblings of Asian descent during this pandemic. PRAY: • Seek comfort and hope in the Risen Lord who is always with us, sustaining and supporting us through every season of life. Thanks in advance for your generosity.
Supporting Local Initiatives – SPC has made a donation to Pepperoni Grill to assist with their Heroes Pizzas fund. Pepperoni Grill is offering customers the opportunity to help out by purchasing a $10 large pizza to go to their Heroes Pizzas fund. Pizzas are donated almost every day now to support essential workers (grocery stores, health care workers, police officers, pharmacy workers etc.), and local families in need.
Matthew’s Ministry continues to collect items to distribute. Each week they have 8-10 collection sites for families to pick up food. Their biggest need right now is: rice, Chef Boy-R-Dee items, macaroni and cheese, and canned chicken. They are always in need of canned meats, canned pasta sauces, pasta, soups, canned fruits or vegetables, macaroni and cheese, ramen noodles, granola bars, crackers, and oatmeal packets or small boxes of cereal. There is a food drop off window on the side of their building (8500 Oak Island Drive) where food can be left at any time. Please check the packaging as they do not accept open or expired foods.
This year’s special Easter season offering, One Great Hour of Sharing, is being received by churches through the Presbyterian Church (USA). It serves to provide immediate disaster relief, feed the hungry, and to help and empower people who suffer all over the world. Of course, this year the needs are immense: tornadoes, hurricanes, storms, and COVID-19 have overwhelmed many. With OGHS funds already in place, disaster relief efforts provide immediate support for housing, medical care, food and clothing. Sharing in this work together with brothers and sisters of faith is one way we become the household of God. You can send your offering gift to the church, with a check made out to “Southport Presbyterian Church” and the notation, OGHS, or you can give on-line through your online banking. On-line giving will soon be available through our website.
Have extra time on your hands for a project that will help those on the “front lines” deal with the Coronavirus? There is a need for Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), also known as “face masks” for our medical professionals on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic. These include many of our congregation’s family members who are medical professionals. If you have a stack of leftover fabric, can sew or can just cut out fabric to make sewing kits, you can help. Unfortunately, the need is greater than the supply for disposable PPEs, but a simple, cotton fabric face mask with a vacuum cleaner bag filter is easily made!
All you need is a pattern, tightly woven cotton or cotton blend fabric, any color or pattern, 7 1/2 inches by 9 1/2 inches – so leftover, scrap fabric is fine, elastic (even elastic hair ties will do) or you can make ties out of bias tape or ribbon, vacuum cleaner bags (available at Walmart, Amazon, or your own closet) and time – that we all have! Pattern and directions can also be downloaded here.
If you are not a sewer, or do not have a machine, we could also use volunteers to cut the pattern pieces for the “mask kits.” Donation of laundered fabric scraps are also appreciated. For questions about sewing instructions and where to donate masks, contact RuthAnn Ferraro firstname.lastname@example.org.