Social Ministry at Grace and Beyond
FOOD PANTRY HELP– We are in need of a Grace Food Pantry representative. Dick Boehmke is retiring after many years of faithful service. For more information or to volunteer for this much-needed ministry, please contact the office.
CHRISTMAS FAMILY SHARING– Tis the Season! Our Christmas Family Sharing ministry will be starting soon. This year, though, it will look just a bit different. After partnering with Bethel New Life in Chicago for more than 20 years, Bethel has decided not to offer this program. After conversations with Pr. Amanda and Pr. Ken, Grace will continue to support the Family Health Partnership Clinic (FHPC) and will also support Turning Point and ELCA Good Gifts helping to meet needs in our local community as well as our global community. Stop by to visit the Giving Tree in the narthex starting November 25 and continuing until final gift collection on December 17. This year we are offering several different ways to help support our ministry partners:
Family Health Partnership Clinic: The Giving Tree will again have ornaments with items that FHPC can use in their clinic and food pantry. In addition, we can help supply their Mobile Clinic which supports a number of individuals in Woodstock. For those of you who are online shoppers, FHPC has created an Amazon Wish List. You can order items off the list and have them shipped directly to the Clinic. Go to Amazon.com and look for Family Health Partnership Clinic under Wish Lists. https://www.amazon.com/gp/registry/wishlist/?ie=UTF8&cid=A372QR19KD28I2
Turning Point: Ornaments on the Giving Tree for Turning Point will help supply the ongoing needs of their shelter. There will be ornaments for specific items. There will also be ornaments with envelopes attached. Donations collected in these envelopes will be given to Turning Point to help them buy Gravity Blankets. These blankets are therapeutic for individuals who have experienced trauma and ongoing anxiety. Each blanket costs approximately $100.
ELCA Good Gifts: Ornaments on the Giving Tree for ELCA Good Gifts will also have envelopes attached. You can choose from a wide variety of items – from chicks, to goats, to school uniforms – to help support people in need around the world. You can indicate on the envelope what item you would like to sponsor, and after we have collected all the envelopes, we will place an order with ELCA Good Gifts. You can also order online at ELCA.org/goodgifts. Thank you for your ongoing support of the Christmas Family Sharing program – no matter what it looks like! If you have any questions, stop by the table, or feel free to contact Mary Beth Martin-Bellavia (815-338-5194 or email@example.com).
MITTEN TREE- Winter is approaching and it’s time to collect NEW mittens, hats, gloves, scarves, socks, and underwear for children and adults in need. Please bring these items to church between November 25 and December 17 and hang them on the mitten trees in the narthex and lower level. Your gifts will be much appreciated by families in our community! If you have any questions, please contact Ellie Thurow at firstname.lastname@example.org.
PEOPLE IN NEED FORUM– Anyone who is interested in helping those in need is encouraged to attend this forum. Topics will include homelessness, senior population, veterans, budgeting, financial resources, and more. The event is Saturday, January 27, 2018, 8:00a.m.– 12:30p.m. Luecht Conference Center McHenry County College. Register today at www.mchenry.edu/peopleinneed. For more information contact: Bev Thomas at email@example.com
PADS…Grace Lutheran Church has agreed to provide all resources to run the PADS (place for our homeless to sleep) site on the 3rd Saturday of each month other than the physical location. Our homeless sisters and brothers will be staying at the United Methodist Church here in Woodstock. Grace will be providing the volunteers to staff the site from 5:00 pm on Saturday to 7:00 am on Sunday. We will also be providing dinner on Saturday evening, Breakfast on Sunday morning and bag lunches to send with each person who stays at the shelter.
If you are interested in finding out more about this opportunity to help our homeless sisters and brothers please call, text, or email Gretchen Hutchens at 815-341-7544, firstname.lastname@example.org. Non-members are welcome to join us. Please let anyone that might be interested, know about this opportunity.
NORTHERN IL DIAPER BANK – The diaper bank is in need of men’s and women’s adult incontinence products. Undergarments in medium, large, and X large are needed along with pads and guards for men and women. Please use the drop off box in the upper entry.
MEALS ON WHEELS– Meals on Wheels is a service delivering meals to those who cannot cook for themselves. They deliver between 10:45 am and Noon. Meals are picked up at Centegra Woodstock and delivered in the area. Meals on Wheels is in need of a team of two people on Mondays every five weeks. They are also in need of 1 driver with a car to partner with an existing volunteer on Thursdays. They really need you. If you can help with this ministry please call Jeannie May 815-943-4849.
CAREGIVER COUNSELING AND RESPITE CARE SUPPORT PROGRAM—Offered by Family Alliance of Woodstock and Huntley. Learn about: health risks to the caregiver, such as loneliness, stress, and isolation; mindful practices and how to incorporate them into a daily routine; educational events and support groups. Adult daycare provided by Family Alliance while the caregiver attends. Call 815-338-3590 for dates and times. Find additional information online at www.familyallianceinc.org.
STEPHEN MINISTRY – is a one-to-one lay caring ministry that takes place within the congregation. The ministry goal is to support the growth and health of the Congregation through use of Lay Leaders that are trained to care to hurting people in and around our congregation. People experiencing a difficult time in life, such as grief, divorce, job loss, chronic or terminal illness. In the past, Grace has used this program (we are still enrolled) and we are now revitalizing it. Grace is looking for caring people that would be interested in becoming either Stephen Leaders or Stephen Ministers. The Leaders would be asked to attend a Leaders Training Course this spring (April 12-18) in St. Louis, MO. Following the leadership course, these leaders would bring their education back to Grace and this fall select and train the Stephen Ministers at Grace Lutheran for a 2-year term of service. If you are interested in learning more please contact Pastor Amanda, Pastor Ken, the church office or Claude Hutchens (email@example.com). The website www.stephenministries.org also has additional information.
DAYTIME DROP-IN VOLUNTEERS—One of WACM (Woodstock Area Community Ministry)’s ministries is a Day Time Drop-In center to provide shelter, laundry and a meal to those in need. WACM is looking for a few volunteers to serve on Thursday mornings from 6:30-7:30 a.m. to transition from a PADS site to a Day Time Drop-In center. Please contact coordinator, John Hudson, firstname.lastname@example.org, if you would like to volunteer.
DIRECT ASSISTANCE PROGRAM —The Direct Assistance Program (DAP) is operated by the Woodstock Area Community Ministry. WACM strives to provide emergency assistance to those families who need it most. It is held here at Grace Lutheran Church on the first and third Thursday of the month from noon to 3:00 p.m. Because of the tremendous growing needs of the community, DAP has had to cut back on its services due to a shortage of funds. You can help by making a regular donation to DAP using the white pew envelope. WACM is jointly operated by 12 local congregations and organizations, including Grace.
VOLUNTEERS NEEDED—The Direct Assistance Program is in great need of volunteers. DAP is open on Thursdays from 12-3pm, and meets in the nursery here at Grace. DAP assists persons in emergency financial crisis by providing gas vouchers, food vouchers, clothing, medical supplies, etc. If interested, please call Patrice Braun at (815) 529-4370.
Woodstock Diaper Bank—Do you need diapers or incontinence supplies? The Vine Christian Church, a partner with the St. Paul Diaper Bank Partnership, now offers diapers for children and adults. To receive diapers, an application form must be filled out in advance. All who ask will receive. Elderly in need of diapers are encouraged to apply.
PADS (Public Action to Deliver Shelter)
On the fourth Wednesday of each month from October through April Grace members prepare and serve dinner to homeless people who are staying at the emergency shelter at the Unitarian Universalist Congregation church. Check the poster in the narthex for ways you can contribute to the meals.
PADS offers shelter and services for people who are homeless. For more information about other services for the homeless, visit www.mchenrycountypads.com.
Food Pantry needs
The Woodstock Food Pantry needs our help to restock its shelves. Donations of nonperishable food, paper goods, and toiletries can be placed in the basket in the vestibule. Items especially requested include canned vegetables (corn, green beans), canned fruit (peaches, pears, pineapple), soup (vegetable, cream of mushroom, chicken noodle, tomato), toilet paper, toothpaste, deodorant, and feminine hygiene products. Cash donations through the church office are also much appreciated. Please bring your items on “Food Pantry Sunday” – the first Sunday of each month – or at any time. Thank you!
Habitat for Humanity
HABITAT FOR HUMANITY/THRIVENT BUILDS— Construction has begun on a Habitat for Humanity house at 1601 Hillside Drive in McHenry. This is an opportunity for Grace members to work together with a low-income family to make the goal of homeownership attainable for the family. Volunteers are needed on Saturday, August 3. There are two ways to help: 1) Join the construction crew. Construction experience is not required, but volunteers must be at least 18 years old (16- and 17-year-olds may work if a parent is present). Depending on progress made on previous Saturdays, the work on August 3 will probably be installing insulation or drywall. 2) Donate sandwiches, side dishes, or other items. Our church is responsible for providing lunch for about 15 volunteers.
Please sign up at the Information Center or contact Kristin Thurow (815-337-8214, email@example.com). For more information about Habitat for Humanity, visit www.habitatmchenry.org (click on ―Our Projects to see progress and
a map for the Marengo house).
The ELCA website is a great resource for putting our faith into action through social ministry. For more information about our church’s efforts to help people who are hungry, poor, or affected by natural disasters around the world, visit www.elca.org/Our-Faith-In-Action/Responding-to-the-World.aspx. For more information about ways we work for peace and justice in our world, visit www.elca.org/Our-Faith-In-Action/Justice.aspx.
Tanzanian Banner Gift
Grace has received a painted banner crafted by the members of our partner congregation, the Arusha Town Lutheran Parish in Arusha, Tanzania. We offer our prayers of thanks for our partners in ministry at the Arusha Town Parish. The youth at Grace have painted a banner with the message “We are One in the Spirit,” which was delivered in early July to Arusha.
Fair Trade Coffee/Tea/Chocolate sales
Stop by Grace’s monthly narthex table of fair trade coffee, tea, chocolate and cocoa goods. Grace receives no monies from these sales, but by purchasing these products we are ensuring that the farmers are given a fair price for their work.
Delicious flavors and varieties include:
Colombian Decaf Whole Bean / Colombian Decaf Ground
Hazelnut Creme Ground / Hazelnut Creme Decaf Ground
French Vanilla Ground / Toffee Caramel Ground
Cafe Salvador Whole Bean / Cafe Salvador Ground
Organic Mind, Body, And Soul Whole Bean
Organic Mind, Body And Soul Ground
Organic French Roast Whole Bean
Organic French Roast Ground
English Breakfast Tea / Green Tea
Earl Gray Tea / Organic Hot Cocoa Mix
Organic Baking Cocoa / Divine Milk Chocolate
Divine Dark Chocolate / Divine Milk Chocolate with Hazelnuts
Organic Caffeine-Free Rooibios Tea / Divine Dark Chocolate with Mint
Almonds / Pecans Dried Cranberries
To learn more about Lutheran World Relief and its Coffee Project efforts visit their Web site at www.lutheranworldrelief.org.
Woodstock Area Community Ministry: Grace is one of the member churches of WACM, which works to provide financial assistance for local families in need through programs such as the Direct Assistance Program and the Woodstock Walk for Hunger.
Valley Hi Nursing Home: The Social Ministry Team at Grace organizes “arts and crafts days” two to three times a year for the residents of Valley Hi Nursing Home. The most recent activity was in May. More information will be announced in the Grace for Today newsletter when the next activity is scheduled.
Links to Other Service Organizations Supported by Grace
Grace supports the following organizations either financially or by recruiting volunteers:
Willow Brooke Neighborhood Resource Center: Volunteers are needed to tutor children living in the Willow Brooke (formerly Lakewood) apartment complex. Contact the resource center at 815-338-1030.
Bread for the World/ELCA World Hunger Appeal Grace partners with Bread for the World and the ELCA World Hunger Appeal to raise awareness of hunger and poverty around the world and to work for justice for the hungry and poor. For more information, contact www.bread.org and www.elca.org/hunger.
Family Health Partnership Clinic provides quality health care to the uninsured and underinsured in McHenry County. www.hpclinic.org
Peace 4 All, Inc. offers education/prevention services related to domestic violence and helps people who are involved in domestic violence. www.peace4allonline.org
Lutheran Social Services of Illinois provides a wide range of social services to individuals and families. www.lssi.org
Senior Care Volunteer Network of McHenry County trains and matches volunteers with senior citizens who need assistance with shopping, light housework, transportation to doctor appointments, and so on. www.fiamchenrycounty.org
Volunteer Center of McHenry County website: http://www.volunteermchenrycounty.org
WACM – Woodstock Area Community Ministries – http://wacmgroup.org/