Minutes for Mission 2020 – Community Ministries Make a Difference

Our community ministry focuses on
transformational justice by affirming the worth of individuals, empowering
communities and seeking social justice. We’ve been offering support in the
community for over 60 years as an organization and have grown from one
program that started in the basement of United Church to now having over 30
different programs. Poverty is not being in partnership or not being in communion
with the other and when I asked one of our Indigenous brothers and what it
meant to be poor, they meant being poor meant a lack of kinship. Any
transformational spiritual moment or a moment of grace, you can’t predict when
that happens. It could be because it was your 30th bowl of soup for breakfast or
it could be because you got your income stable and it could be that you had a
place to sleep while you were working but not earning enough to find an
apartment and you had a safe place to keep your things while you were at work
until you could find a new apartment. And that’s one of the reasons why we
have such a broad spectrum of programs that we offer because there’s no one
magical thing or moment or program that works for everybody. Being up so
prepared is a big step for me like I’ve been so before but not this long to
being apparent. When I use my tools from talking to people that understand and it
can give me good honest advice back and it’s usually here at work, outreach, the
minister, my boss, people up in admin because it gives me the strength that it’s
okay I’m not alone. My experience here has been a positive
one, been coming here for 11 years. I mostly come for the meal program . They’ve
helped me with mental health issues, finding suitable housing. It’s been
nothing but a positive experience. By giving back to the community
sometimes you know they give back to us also. It’s all about lots of love. The
love here, honestly it’s crazy, it’s really crazy. When you come here, the
door is open. I like it because it’s friendly. Well I was a single parent
and had my son home alone. I was on a fixed income, I needed somewhere to take him where he could interact with other children. It helped the people who
actually need help. For me it was just a sense of community. It’s just nice. We do
drumming and pray together and read the gospel and offer smudging and
traditional medicines to everyone in the room. We do community ministry because
Jesus told us, feed my sheep, take care of my people. Your gifts to the Mission and Service of
the United Church of Canada help make programs like these possible. Thank you
and please continue to give.

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