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Christ Church Outreach News: August 3, 2023

Columbia Community Care Gains Funds and Recognition at an Orioles Game; Continues to Recruit Volunteers and Request Baby Care Items

The excitement was about more than the Baltimore Orioles beating the New York Yankees on Sunday night. An Oakland Mills High School (OMHS) teacher was honored as a Birdland Community Hero. With the award came a $5,000 donation to the charity of her choice: Columbia Community Care (CCC).

An image of OMHS Spanish teacher Ashleigh Elizabeth Magrin and the big check, made out to Columbia Community Care, flashed on the scoreboard in a fifth-inning ceremony. She is lead organizer of the OMHS Food Pantry, where Magrin is pictured going “above and beyond to serve her community” as the latest hero on the Orioles’ Birdland Community Heroes page. The OMHS pantry operates year-round to serve about 80 families a month. “It’s truly a wonderful community effort that Ashleigh Elizabeth keeps going strong,” posted CCC Director of Operations Meg Feroli on the CCC Facebook Group.

CCC recently received another source of funds that came with metro-wide recognition of its impact. A July 24 article in the Howard County Times reported that CCC was among six county recipients of grants from United Way of Central Maryland.

Christ Church supports CCC in various ways, including collecting baby supplies and recruiting volunteers. To sign up for tasks at the pantry, the garden, making home deliveries, or staffing the Saturday distribution sites, go to the “I Can Help” portion of its website. Please keep collecting baby wipes and diapers, in addition to sanitary and personal care items and adult diapers. Put them in the yellow bin, marked “CCC,” inside the Parish Hall. Drop off items on weekdays when the church office is open or on Sundays. The Christ Church point of contact is Leigh Smith, who monitors the bins and delivers their contents.

Enjoy a 3-minute Performance by the Sabina Children’s Choir or Watch the Entire Zoom Recap to Explore the Work of Friends of Sabina in Uganda

Don’t miss the chance to see and hear the musical selection performed expressly for members of Christ Church by the children’s choir of Sabina Boarding Primary School. Despite a time difference that kept the choir assembled until late in the evening in Sanje, Uganda, the students performed flawlessly during a Zoom session on July 23. They sang “Sanctus-Latin,” which had been part of their prize-winning repertoire during a regional competition.

You’ll find the performance on An Incredibly Heartwarming Zoom Recap with Friends of Sabina” on the Christ Church website or posted as FOS Choir July 23, 2023 on our YouTube channel. “The children’s choir is lovely; we enjoy listening to them on campus,” commented Ann Marie Davis, a leader of Friends of Sabina (FOS) who is in Uganda and joined Zoom along with leader Maria White. Both expressed gratitude for parishioners’ long-term assistance and the recent outpouring. Part of the Zoom was a photo collage of nine currently sponsored students (see photos).

In an uplifting response to the July 23 event, parishioners stepped forward to sponsor two more: Roger, 10, and Phionah, 15. You’ll find a photo collage of children who were first matched in 2020, when they were ages 8 to 15, on the FOS page of the Christ Church website. Several sponsors and students enjoyed chatting together at the end of the hybrid Zoom session. The youngsters come from families who otherwise cannot afford their schooling.

Three of the sponsored boys were recently instructed in skills needed to grow coffee, described in a section of the Zoom recap at approximately 39 minutes, 18 seconds into the video clip. FOS is looking to raise funds to grow coffee as part of its sustainability initiatives.

Leaders also continue to seek parishioners who will provide teacher sponsorships, by committing $150 a month individually or by partnering with others to sponsor teachers. The need to retain talent and keep classroom sizes down is discussed at approximately 44 minutes and 50 seconds into the video clip. For information on teacher sponsorships, please email Christ Church Outreach at

Christ Church established Sabina’s library and continues its support through the Outreach Commission. That includes paying the salary of librarian Richard Tumusiime, who is featured at approximately 50 minutes and 48 seconds into the video clip. He is commended by The Rev. Emmanuel Mercer in remarks at approximately 1 hour, and 3 minutes into the video clip

FOS completed one phase of infrastructure improvements and plans to resume its WASH campaign to modernize sanitation. The ongoing fundraising effort is discussed at approximately 58 minutes, 06 seconds into the video clip.

Since Christ Church became a supporter of Sabina more than a decade ago, several parishioners have traveled there. The Alperns and the Hokes saw their sponsored students at that time, and the Aribiahs renewed ties going back to Teddy’s childhood. During the Zoom, teenage students at Sabina enjoyed talking with Teddy and Sonni and especially to Jonah Aribiah about being in high school in the United States.

Help Pack the LEMS Supplies - August 16

Please join us to pack the supplies in the Parish Hall on Wednesday, August 16th at 9:00 a.m. The school will distribute the supplies the week of August 21st, so we also will need your help delivering the supplies that week. Strong arms and larger vehicles are helpful.

If you can't help us that day, there are other ways to assist. One measure of whether a student lives in a family that is financially challenged is if they meet the federal guidelines for free and reduced meals (FARMS). In Howard County overall, about 14% of students qualify for free and reduced meals. However, at LEMS over 48.5% of LEMS students qualify for FARMS, the highest percentage amongst the middle schools in the county.

Contributions can be made via check, online, or via text. If you’d like to write a check, please make sure you indicate “LEMS School Supplies” on the memo line. If you’d like to give online, please also write "School Supplies" in the Memo line. If you have questions about our LEMS partnership or would like to help on August 16th, please contact Cathy Whittaker ( or Mary Vail ( Thank you for your support!

Donate Snacks, Crackers, and Cookies to FISH in Bin on our Breezeway

Organizers for FISH of Howard County continue to ask for cookies, crackers, and snacks to fulfill their shopping lists. Please put items in a basket that has been returned to the altar. Or drop them in the yellow bin on the breezeway between Old Brick and the Parish Hall. Thanks for your contributions to our neighbors in need.

In general, if you have suggestions about ways to help the community, if you want to get involved, or if you need assistance, please email Christ Church Outreach at Your help is greatly welcomed and appreciated. Thank you.


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