Over 100 years ago, three men formed an organization whose only aim was to provide Bibles to be placed in hotel rooms. Since that beginning, millions of New and Old Testaments and other religious tracts have been distributed to men, women, children, hotels, motels, doctors' offices, prisons, Army personnel, colleges, schools, and other groups. Many people have had their first encounter with Jesus Christ through a Bible or testament handed to them by a Gideon or Auxiliary member. Gideon members are nominated for membership by the local Gideon camp and approved by their local pastor and they pledge to help distribute God's word whenever and wherever they can through the world. More than 175 countries in the world have Gideon camps with thousands of members helping to spread God's message every day.
The CMA exists to create and express a spirit of unity and cooperation among the churches in ministering to the spiritual and social needs of the community; provide the opportunity for community worship on special occasions, and be a Christian influence within the community. For more information about the CMA, please contact a local church.
Our special stewardship offering for April is the River City Habitat for Humanity Chapter in Jefferson City, which is one of over forty affiliates in Missouri. Funds and building materials are donated by individuals, churches, businesses, and other organizations. Construction labor and support of the organization are provided by volunteers. Upon completion of a house, a percentage of the cost of each house is sent to Habitat for Humanity International as a tithe to be used to help build houses in another country. No government funds are used to build the houses. If you would like to contribute to this important mission, make checks payable to the UCC of California and write Habitat for Humanity on the memo line. Thank you for your support.
In 1893 in Marthasville, Missouri, Emmaus Homes was founded by our antecedent denomination (The Evangelical Synod) when they decided to use their vacated seminary buildings to serve individuals with developmental disabilities. As a reflection of their Christian faith, the founders of Emmaus attempted to care for those in need while recognizing each person's worth and unique qualities and creating a community spirit. In 1901, Emmaus opened its St Charles campus to meet the vast need for services to people with developmental disabilities closer to St. Louis. Today, while some individuals still reside on the Emmaus campuses, many now live in homes in the community. Emmaus serves clients in nearly 50 homes throughout St. Charles, St. Louis, Warren, and Franklin counties and St. Louis City. Emmaus works with each client to help them live as independently as possible.
Arising from faith in Jesus Christ, the mission of Emmaus Homes is to enhance the quality of life for all adults of all beliefs who have cognitive, intellectual, and other developmental disabilities. The individual's mental, physical, and social abilities are assessed to determine the living situation best suited to their needs, including on-campus housing, group homes, and individual supported living residences. Some homes have 24-hour supervision, while others provide part-time supervision and assistance.
At Emmaus, an individual's spiritual life is an important part of one's journey to fulfillment and independence. Emmaus takes pride in their faith-based heritage and strives to help each of their clients participate in the faith community of their choice. Ordained ministers and seminary students help guide and encourage their clients of all beliefs in their spiritual pursuits. A variety of spiritual care services are provided to clients, family members, and staff.
Our June stewardship offering is for Pilgrim Congregational UCC Soup Kitchen. In 1982, this historic church in St. Louis sensed the need to feed the hungry in its neighborhood. Since that time, every Wednesday, between 70-90 men, women, and children have been supplied with a nutritious lunch by the members and friends of Pilgrim Church. Clothing is now available to be picked up during the Wednesday meals. Our offering will be used to buy food that Pilgrim volunteers will serve to the hungry in the name of Jesus Christ.
The Rape and Abuse Crisis Service began its mission in early 1980 by establishing a 24-hour crisis hotline to offer emotional support and referral information to victims of domestic violence and sexual assault. They serve eight mid-Missouri counties: Cole, Gasconade, Maries, Miller, Moniteau, Morgan, Osage, Southern Boone, and Southern Callaway.
Moniteau Christian Ministries Center is both the Cargill Cares Food Pantry & the Project Share Thrift Shop in one building located at 303 Latham Road. MCMC has been serving Moniteau County for the last 16 years and would welcome anyone who has not seen the Thrift Shop (open Thursday and Friday from 10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. & Saturday from 10 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.) stop by to see the many & varied items for sale.
The Cargill Cares Food Pantry is open from 3:00-5:00 p.m. on the first, second, & third Thursday & Friday of each month and from 9:00-11:00 a.m. on the third Saturday. Food items distributed are received from the Central Missouri Food Bank, local donations, food drives, & other supporting entities. If anyone is needing food, please come to the food bank on distribution days or contact Barb Mannering (573-291-4405) in an emergency or also to help with distribution. THE CARGILL CARES FOOD PANTRY serves an average of 300 families each month.
PROJECT SHARE'S Thrift Shop provides free clothing monthly to those requesting clothing assistance. Project Share's income provides monies to the food bank, pays utilities, insurance, and numerous other expenses to maintain the MCMC facility. A benevolent activity that Project Share has undertaken is a prison ministry where an inmate may request needed items (1-pant, 1-shirt, & 1-coat). Hopefully, items will be available off the racks.
The Cargill Cares pantry has their "Buddy Pack" program which runs during the school year. If you are interested in volunteering, please contact Barb Mannering at 573-291-4405. This could be to help with buddy packs, preparing food for distribution, or in the actual distribution of food.
Project Share is also in need of volunteers to prepare the donated clothing, etc. to stock their thrift store. This activity takes place every Monday & Tuesday from 10:00 a.m. until around 5:00 p.m. or as many hours as you wish to help. If you are interested in helping in the shop with customer sales, contact Ruth Ann Jobe (573-230-6625).
The Food Bank for Central & Northeast Missouri is a regional disaster and hunger relief network that acquires and distributes millions of pounds of food annually to partner agencies across a 32-county area.
As a member of Feeding America, The Food Bank is able to work with manufacturers, wholesalers, processors, growers, retailers, and restaurants to secure donations and food at reduced costs.
The Food Bank partners with 140 food pantries, soup kitchens, shelters, and other agencies to ensure food gets into the hands of those who need it most. The Food Bank also works with 150 schools to help students receive nutritious food. We are the only food bank in the state to provide that food at no charge to other organizations.
The special benevolence offering for September is the Church World Service Blanket+ Program. This program meets the emergency needs as well as the long-term demands of rebuilding shattered lives and communities. Church World Service responds immediately after a disaster happens. Their commitment is to stand with people in the long process of recovery and rehabilitation. When images of horror from earthquakes and other disasters fade from the news, CWS is still there working to provide care to traumatized children; rebuilding homes and clinics; strengthening food security by providing seeds and tools, fishing equipment, and training. Through the Tools and Blankets Program, you can reach out in compassion to people in need in more than 80 nations, including the United States.
The benevolence offering for the month of October is the Salvation Army Center of Hope. The Center of Hope is an emergency shelter for homeless men, women, and parents with children. It is the only shelter in the Jefferson City area that accommodates and can house all these groups, including veterans and senior citizens.
The Center of Hope Emergency Shelter provides social services that include a food pantry, clothing vouchers for the Salvation Army Thrift Store, Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners, Christmas assistance for food and toys for families, Christmas and Easter gifts for nursing home residents. Additional services available to help the homeless or near-homeless are the Pathway for Hope Program, rent and utility assistance, and a permanent housing program. There are services specifically for children, such as free scouting programs, summer camps, kids' choir, and Christmas Kids.
The Salvation Army Corps provides Sunday School for all ages on Sunday at 10:00 a.m. and regular worship service on Sunday at 11:00 a.m. Please prayerfully consider giving to this worthy Christian cause.
The special offering for Benevolence for November is Buddy Packs for Moniteau County. You can help children right here in our community who are in need by donating money to purchase food for the program. For many of them, breakfast and lunch at school offer the only source of reliable nutrition and they are at risk of hunger over the weekend. Moniteau Christian Ministries Center partners with the Food Bank for Central and Northeast Missouri to provide Buddy Packs for those students. Buddy Packs are bags filled with kid-friendly, nutritious food that students take home over the weekend or holiday periods to supplement their meals when it is not enough for them to eat at home. The program continues week after week throughout the school year or as needed to keep the growing youngsters happy and healthy.
The Christmas Fund Offering (formerly Veterans of the Cross) is an important way of sharing our joy at God’s renewing and life-giving grace. The offering, which is administered by the United Church Board for Ministerial Assistance of the Pension boards on behalf of the UCC, is an expression of joy and gratitude to, and for, those who serve the church. Gifts to the Christmas Fund help provide pension and health premium supplementation to low-income retirees, emergency assistance to the families of clergy and lay employees, and Christmas gift checks to hundreds of annuitants. Your gifts are needed more than ever to help the growing number of retirees whose low-income annuities make it difficult to meet increasing living costs. This is your opportunity to participate in God’s promise of renewal by enabling this ministry of compassion and care. Our joy at Christmas is a response to God’s promise of new life through the birth of Jesus. It is a joy we are called to share widely, through our witness and gifts, both to loved ones and to distant neighbors.
Every Child’s Hope (ECH) was founded in 1858 as an orphanage for immigrant children who lost their parents in cholera outbreaks. As the needs of St. Louis children and families have evolved over the past century and a half, our services and programs have adapted to meet those ever-changing needs. While ECH is no longer an orphanage, caring for vulnerable children is still at the heart of each program. More than 200 staff members across Missouri are dedicated to preventing child abuse, treating emotional and mental health issues, and providing aftercare and follow-up services. Each year ECH helps more than 1,400 youth and children find healing and hope for their futures. ECH provides hope for every child, healing for every family, every day.
The Samaritan Center began as a small food pantry in 1987 with few hands and much work to do. Today the Center reaches thousands of hands outstretched in need. More than 2,500 children and adults depend on the Samaritan Center each month to keep food on the table between paychecks or social security benefits. The Center also provides dental care as well as how to cook nourishing meals and to develop healthy eating habits.
Halo House’s mission is to help save the lives of cancer patients battling leukemia, lymphoma, or myeloma by providing them with fully furnished temporary housing at a very low cost while they are undergoing active treatment for their cancer at the Texas Medical Center.
The Healing House and New Beginnings is a program of recovery filled with recovery-minded men and women with willing hearts, disciplined minds, and positive attitudes located in Jefferson City, Missouri.
Central Missouri Foster Care and Adoption Association is a not-for-profit agency that educates, supports, and advocates for foster and adoptive children, youth, and families in central Missouri by offering services and partnering with community and governmental agencies to develop healthy and self-sufficient individuals and families.
The Festival of Sharing is a cooperative response to world hunger, poverty, and injustice. These concerns motivate our actions to raise awareness of the causes and generate solutions. Our goal is to promote and support projects and programs by providing funding and resource goods. When people of faith come together and share, we can make a positive and powerful difference in the lives of people in need.
This year we will be hosting seven regional events throughout September-October. These interfaith gatherings of resources connect the state of Missouri with a common goal: providing resources for our neighbors in need. Join us to experience the joy of sharing!
Operation Christmas Child is a project of Samaritan's Purse, an international relief organization. Our mission is to provide local partners around the world with shoeboxes filled with small toys, hygiene items, and school supplies as a means of reaching out to children in their own communities with the Good News of Jesus Christ. We ship these simple gifts outside the United States to children affected by war, poverty, natural disaster, famine, and disease; and to children living on Native American reservations in the U.S.
During the month of January, the Stewardship focus is the One Great Hour of Sharing fund. With our congregation's gifts to this fund, the United Church of Christ offers hope and well-being to people around the world. Working with international ministry partners and with the domestic UCC disaster network, the offering is used to help people make vital basic improvements in their lives. In cooperation with Church World Service, nine Christian churches support One Great Hour of Sharing - a life-giving tradition that began in 1949. By giving to One Great Hour of Sharing, you connect with communities suffering from poverty, illiteracy, illness, and the dangers of wars and disasters. Together we make a world of difference! Through the work and mission of One Great Hour of Sharing, we are reminded that our neighbor is not just the family next door, but anywhere around the world where people are in need. One way we can show love for our neighbor is through offerings to One Great Hour of Sharing.
Once a year, congregations across the United Church of Christ receive the Strengthen the Church offering. Joining with those churches, our Stewardship focus is upon that offering. The offering will provide funding both in our Missouri Mid-South Conference and nationally in the U.C.C. to help fund new church starts as well as invigorating existing congregations. It will also be directed toward nurturing lay and pastoral leadership and building youth and young adult ministries. Please consider a gift to this important mission of our church.
Sharing is an essential part of what God calls us to do as the people of God's Church. We are called to share our joys and concerns. We are called to share our time and talents. The church was founded with sharing at its core.
In the United Church of Christ, one of the ways we are invited to share is through our offerings to Our Church's Wider Mission (OCWM). OCWM is the way that the United Church of Christ helps distribute services, resources, and expertise to all within our faith community who have need.
The financial support your church shares, through OCWM, gives us the opportunity to have a common funding source that helps us all to do those things that we could not do as effectively by ourselves. OCWM helps OUR church BE the Church.