Social Ministry at Grace and Beyond
FOOD PANTRY HELP– For more information or to volunteer for this much-needed ministry, please contact the office.
2023 CHRISTMAS FAMILY SHARING– Tis the Season! Our Christmas Family Sharing ministry started Nov. 5. Grace continues to support the Family Health Partnership Clinic (FHPC), Turning Point, and ELCA Good Gifts. Which in turn helps to meet the needs in our local community as well as our global community. Visit the Giving Tree in the narthex no later than Dec. 3. This year we are offering several different ways to help support our ministry partners:
Family Health Partnership Clinic: The Giving Tree will have ornaments with Walmart gift cards to help a family in need.
Turning Point: Ornaments on the Giving Tree for Turning Point will stock their “Holiday Toy Shop,” which they offer free of charge to their clients. Gifts needed include toys, games, arts and crafts, and gift cards.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org).
2023 MITTEN TREE
It’s time to collect NEW mittens, hats, gloves, scarves, socks, and underwear for children and adults in need. Please bring your donations to the church between Nov. 24 and Dec. 24, and hang them on the mitten tree in the Narthex.
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.
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, email@example.com, 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, firstname.lastname@example.org). 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.
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