Christ Church Outreach News: July 7, 2022


Inviting Parishioners to Get Involved in Christ Church Outreach by Virtually Attending Our Next Meeting - Next Monday, July 11th

The Outreach Commission invites you to join in during our monthly meeting to learn more about opportunities this summer. In keeping with our mission, the scope is local, national, and international. The meeting will be held virtually at 7:30 p.m. on Monday, July 11th, so simply email outreach@christchurchcolumbia.org for the Zoom link and join us!


Volunteers Needed to Serve a Meal to Our Homeless Friends or Bring Menu and Pantry Items on July 11th

Roll up your sleeves and get ready to participate in a Christ Church tradition of helping the homeless, in person, on the second Monday of each month. People who live in a tent or in their vehicles look forward to the delicious hot meal and other services at the Day Resource Center (DRC) at the Dorsey Center in Jessup. The DRC is operated by Grassroots Crisis Intervention Center.


Meanwhile, people who reside at Grassroots’ Live-in Facility are anticipating the menu items we supply for its evening meal on the same day. To be a part of this rewarding routine, here’s what you need to know: On Monday, July 11th, there are two drop-off times for side dishes and desserts at Christ Church: 12:45 p.m. for the DRC menu and 3:15 p.m. for the Grassroots evening meal.


The fact that Grassroots operates both venues has made it easier for Christ Church to consolidate our approach to feeding the hungry. It’s efficient to provide for groups at two separate venues on the same day. Your donations and Vestry-approved funds pay for the fried chicken entrees. Thank you.


The first group, at the DRC, is made up of about 40 homeless friends whom last month included a family with children. A team of at least four Christ Church volunteers serves the food in person. We most recently pitched in on June 13th, and you can see some photos of that on this week's Outreach blog post.


If you're volunteering, cooking, or shopping for the midday meal at the DRC, plan to arrive no later than 1 p.m. at the parking lot outside Old Brick. That’s when the carpool departs for Jessup. Bring a side dish, a dessert, or items for the DRC pantry. Click on the Christ Church Dorsey/DRC Meal link on SignUpGenius to view requested items and say how you’ll help.


If you're cooking or bringing pantry items for both meals, plan to arrive between 12:45 and 1 p.m. at the parking lot outside Old Brick. Put your items for the evening meal in the Parish Hall kitchen. Or, depending on the dish or the supplementals, such as cookies or fruit, you can put them in the kitchen on a Sunday if your items are clearly marked.


The second group resides at Grassroots’ Live-in Facility, where the staff serves the food that we supply. If you’re cooking or shopping solely for the Live-In Facility’s evening meal, plan to arrive between 3:15 and 3:30 p.m. for the dropoff in the parking lot outside Old Brick. Bring a side dish, a dessert, or items for the pantry. Click on the Christ Church Grassroots Meal link on SignUpGenius to view a menu. Please sign up by noon on Sunday.


Both the DRC and the Live-In Facility have wider needs for their pantries and welcome in-kind donations to be dropped off for delivery on the second Mondays. Look for the monthly needs list under the words “Related Files” on each of the sign-up sites. Monteith Mitchell, volunteer coordinator at Grassroots, says its community pantry shelves and the DRC pantries “are pretty bare,” so your assistance is welcomed.


In-person volunteers are asked to have a flu shot and full COVID-19 vaccination. For information, email outreach@christchurchcolumbia.org to contact co-coordinator Nancy Winchester.


Lake Elkhorn Middle School Supplies

Our parish has had a partnership with Lake Elkhorn Middle School (LEMS) for over five years. Just over a mile away, LEMS is truly our neighboring school and at Christ Episcopal Church we believe that we should love our neighbors. We have this partnership because many LEMS families are financially stressed. Over 50% of LEMS students qualify for free and reduced meals, the highest percentage amongst the middle schools in Howard County. Last year we supplied school supplies for students and also gave each staff member a bright blue school shirt. In prior years we supplied families who needed assistance with bags of food on Fridays that lasted through the weekend.


This year, Melissa Shindel, the principal at LEMS, has asked for the support of Christ Church parishioners to provide school supplies for 125 children for the upcoming school year. It costs about $50 to buy the school-required supplies for just one child so we need over $6,000 to reach this goal. The school will distribute the supplies the week of Aug 22nd, so we are requesting your generous financial support now to reach this important goal. We also will need your help delivering the supplies that week, so let us know if you might be able to help.


Contributions can be made in several ways:

  • If you’d like to write a check, please make sure you write “LEMS school supplies” on the memo line, drop it off at the church office, or mail it in.

  • For giving online via computer/tablet, you'll find our "Support Christ Church" button at the top of every page of our website, or you can click here. On the secure form, choose "LEMS" from the FUND drop-down menu and write "school supplies" on the MEMO line.

  • To give via text, simply text CECGIVING to 73256 using your mobile device, and you'll immediately receive a link to our secure form. Click the link, choose "LEMS" from the FUND drop-down menu, and write "School Supplies" on the MEMO line so that your donation is used as you wish. (Note: This number will never send you unsolicited texts. To cancel further messages, text STOP. If you need assistance with text giving, text HELP. Standard text message and data rates may apply).

If you have questions about our LEMS partnership or would like to help, please contact Cathy Whittaker at catharinewhittaker@gmail.com.


Afghan Family Update

Thanks to the incredible generosity of a person from outside of our parish, our Afghan family now is the proud owner of a 2007 Honda Fit! They are just thrilled, and it is impossible to understate what an important step this is toward the family’s goal of achieving independence and self-sufficiency. It also makes sound financial sense. If you’d like to help the family celebrate by donating a gas card, you can do so here: https://www.signupgenius.com/go/10c0c44aaaf22a1fac34-refugee

Transportation team volunteers – you are still needed!! One car for a busy family of four adults doesn’t cover all of their many transportation needs. Thank you so much to everyone who’s been helping with driving, and if you would like to join the transportation team, we could use you. Please contact Pat Delorenzo at patrice.delorenzo@gmail.com


Columbia Community Care Needs Diapers, Personal Care Items

At Christ Church, members of R.A.G.E and the Outreach Commission ask parishioners to continue supporting the all-volunteer organization, Columbia Community Care (CCC). Please collect diapers, baby wipes, sanitary and personal care items, and adult diapers. Put any of these in the yellow bin, marked “CCC,” inside the Parish Hall. Drop off items on weekdays when the church office is open or on Sunday.


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

Organizers for FISH of Howard County are continuing to ask for cookies, crackers, and snacks to fulfill its shopping lists. The yellow bin is 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 outreach@christchurchcolumbia.org. Your help is greatly welcomed and appreciated. Thank you.