Food Pantry Update

Celebrating the one year anniversary of our new client choice pantry called Harvest: A Galley of Grace

Moving Forward in Ministry in 2011

"Therefore, since we receive a kingdom which cannot be shaken, let us show gratitude, by which we may offer to God an acceptable service with reverence and awe" (Hebrews 12:28).

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Summer Missions, Summer Fun, Summer's Busy!

For those who are in community ministries, you know that summer is not a time for being laid back!  It is a time to plant lots of spiritual seed, to reach into neighborhoods through Backyard Bible Studies, to find new and creative ways to foster healthy entertainment and fun for children when out of school, and to reach their families with Christ's hope.  This summer, our two summer missionaries, Allison Poole and Victoria Bye, have done just that.  In addition to assisting on food and clothing distribution days (which during June saw 120 families, distributed over 3,200 pounds of food, and even saw a family finally able to be cooled by an air conditioner graciously donated by an MBA church member),  these young women have planned and implemented both Bible studies for children and supplemental Bible activies for the Reading on Wheels sessions at the center and have recruited coaches and formed Flag Football teams at a West Montgomery apartment complex, during which a motivational and inspirational time is held while taking their water break (last week, Philippians 4:13 was the theme, and appropriate it was, as many of these 9 - 13 year old boys had just faced a big hurdle when one of their "older friends" had been shot and killed just the day before.)  I felt it appropriate that each one of our summer missionaries speak to you specifically about how God has moved in them and through their work at Forest Park Ministry Center.

Allison's thoughts:
            "Every Thursday morning Victoria and I teach Mixtec children a Bible lesson and we do a craft with them. Jessica also helps us with the children. We have ten children that come, and their ages range from two to ten years old. At first, I was a little nervous about teaching these children, because I was not sure how well they understood English. However, the older kids can actually speak English really well. Our lessons started with the Creation story in Genesis and we went through some Old Testament stories. The day we learned about Jonah, they made fish and we went fishing. The kids really enjoyed doing that. Last week we learned about Jesus, that He came to earth to be our Savior.
            At the beginning of the summer I was asked what was one thing I wanted to see happen this summer. I said I wanted the children to remember the Bible lessons we are teaching them. I want them to know they can always rely on God and that Jesus is our Savior. When I leave Montgomery I’m not sure if I will ever see these children again, but I hope we are planting seeds that will continue to grow in their lives.
            I encourage everyone to pray for these Mixtec children and families. The children have to grow up really fast. Once they learn English, they become translators for their parents. Many of the parents only speak the    Mixtec language. Sometimes it is hard to work with people who don’t speak our same language, but I have learned that we are called to be kind to everyone and God will take care of the rest."

Victoria's thoughts: (In addition to Montgomery community ministries, Victoria just returned from a week's mission trip with her church to Nicaragua.)
            "Hopelessness. Although they are thousands of miles apart, their eyes tell the same story. They live everyday wondering what they will eat, where they will sleep, and why no one seems to care. The sweet little children in La Chureca (the city dump in Managua, Nicaragua) and those in the projects of west Montgomery live the life of “the least of these.” Whether it’s the seven year old girl in the dump whose mother will prostitute her to a truck driver tonight in order to receive the best trash off of his garbage truck or the nine year old boy in the projects who is forced to care for his younger siblings because his mom is an alcoholic and his dad has abandoned the family, they need to feel the love of Jesus. They need to know that there is a better life than the cycle of desolation that they are stuck in. They need to know that there is a God who is bigger than all of their pain and suffering. Will you show them? Will you step outside of your home and venture to the other side of town? Will you give up a week of work to go overseas? Will you set aside your pride and step out of your comfort zone? Will you take love to the ends of the earth? Will you go?"
And the King will say, “I tell you the truth, when you did it to one of the least of these my brothers and sisters, you were doing it to me!” Matthew 25:40

How gracious is our Heavenly Father to move these two faithful young women to reach those in need in the city of Montgomery this summer through Forest Park Ministry Center.  Other volunteer missionaries including Mission Serve and several church youth ministries have also plugged into the missions opportunities at the center. To God be the glory!

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Ways You Can Partner with Forest Park Ministry Center

* Have a food drive in your church
(get list from Donna)There is a dire shortage!
* Hold a Baby Shower for new moms who come to

the center; we need supplies for 12 layettes by October!
* Be a prayer partner and pray for our guests needs
* Need larger sized mens and womens clothing

must be in very good condition
*Hold a Paper supplies shower for the center

*Need a data entry volunteer once a week
*Need a small desk for the receptionist in the waiting area