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By March 27, 2020

Join the FSMM Scavenger Hunt

We as a First Church family support and uplift many ministries, one of which is our beloved First Street Methodist Mission, which has a reinvigorated spirit of giving during this trying time.

Our First Street Methodist Mission has not closed its doors, and our Mission team led by FSMM Director Linda Murphy is working harder than ever to support people living with homelessness and hunger every day in our own backyard. Linda expresses her  heartfelt thanks to the FUMCFW staffers who stepped up to fill the roles of our regular mission volunteers, many of whom are in the high-risk population for contracting COVID-19: “Thanks to all the church staff members who helped us at the Mission  during the past two weeks,” she elaborates, “we provided 301 families with groceries and 324 sack lunches to our unsheltered friends.”

And now there’s a new wrinkle. With the new restrictions on what we can buy and how many of each item we are allowed to buy, the FSMM infant formula program is dwindling. Linda now asks that anyone who wants to help join in this strangely engaging FSMM Scavenger Hunt: “If in the normal course of going to the grocery store for your own family, please remember to help us look for infant formula, baby wipes, and baby cereal,” Linda implores, “and please purchase your allotted amount and donate it to the Mission. Do not put yourself at risk,” she quickly adds, “but if you see some while you are out it would make a world of difference.”

So be sure to keep the FSMM’s weekly Scavenger Hunt Items on your grocery list and when you are able to find any quantity of these items, purchase them and then come and drop them off at the Mission, Monday – Thursday, 8:00 am – 1:00 pm. Just ring the bell at the double doors facing Henderson Street, leave your donation, and know that you are doing your part to help care for one of our city’s hungry babies.

But How Can I Help?

This is a question most of us are asking in one form or another during this time of feeling especially helpless. When events and circumstances are reeling out of control, sometimes the best solace is found in reaching out to one another. Sometimes it is when we begin focusing on the needs of others that we ourselves find comfort and strength — and a feeling of “well, at least I’m doing something.”

But what? Comes the question most closely on the heels of this realization. When needs of the world are so big and complex, what can one person do?

Rev. Phyllis Barren, Associate Pastor of Congregational Care and Lisa Helm, Director of Welcoming Ministries, are here with some help and guidance that will support your desire to reach out to others with some concrete steps, tasks, and opportunities.

It began with compiling lists of people who want to help with calling and checking on those members of our church who may feel especially isolated and lonely during this time. Then, in talking to many different church members during this time of constantly changing rules, restrictions, and precautions, they realized another need.

So here’s where you come in. If you would be willing to help make calls to church members during this time of quarantine—just to be a friendly voice reaching out with a quick hello and to check on how they’re doing — or leave a message on their voicemail, please contact Lisa or Phyllis and they will supply you with a list of people to check on during this time.

And, in addition to calling, if you would be willing to go to the store for one of our high-risk members or help someone learn to Zoom or worship online, or join in any of our many online offerings, Phyllis and Lisa will help connect you with members of our church who are in need of these things.

Saying that she hopes that people who are “Zoom savvy” will step up and volunteer, Lisa adds, “I just got off the phone with a member who normally worships online, but she had no idea about all of the other online things we’re now doing. She was so excited to hear about them; she wants to try a Zoom Bible Study and Lance’s daily devotional.”

If you would like to have this experience of “doing something” in this time of uncertainty, by becoming part of this timely, needed, and caring ministry, please contact either Lisa (lhelm@myfumc.org ) or Phyllis (pbarren@myfumc.org) and let them know, and they’ll be happy to include you in this meaningful work.

Rehoming Vintage Hymnals

To help people worship more fully at home by being able to join in the singing of hymns — at worship and other times — Worship Assistant Elaine Johnson repurposed some old, well used hymnals she discovered that were sitting in storage to send, with a short note of encouragement, to our church members at The Stayton and Trinity Terrace.

“I got the idea from Epworth UMC, the church I grew up in,” Elaine relates. “They loaned hymnals to their members. I knew we had a bunch in storage that choral union used to use, so we decided to give them to our Trinity Terrace and Stayton church members. We also gave them to seven families in the 76019 zip code. We have 19 more!” If you would like to have one of the remaining used hymnals (first-come, first-served!), please email Elaine (ejohnson@myfumc.org).

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