Hope in Action- How We Serve
October 7, 2020
Monthly SERVE Focus – Homelessness
October’s SERVE focus is on homelessness. Crossroads has a long history of serving those on the margins. One of our longest serving missions is DC Food & Fellowship. Each first and third Sunday for over 20 years, Crossroads has been serving meals in Franklin Park to those experiencing homelessness in Washington, DC.   

Since the onset of COVID-19 in March and the closure of Franklin Park in July, Crossroads has not been able to serve our brothers and sisters in Southeast DC on a regular basis. We are partnering with the DC Downtown Day Services Center to provide hygiene kits and other essentials including coats and boots this fall.   

Throughout this month, we will be focusing on the causes of homelessness in Loudoun County, Washington DC and throughout the country. We will learn about the major causes for homelessness and who are most vulnerable and ways we can support and advocate for those on the margins.  

Warming the Homeless – Coats and Boots Mission

Crossroads is once again gearing up for our Annual Warming the Homeless, “Coats and Boots” mission. Coats and boots will be distributed to the DC Downtown Day Services Center and the Loudoun County Homeless Shelter. You can get involved by donating new boots sizes 8-13 (we’ll need a few 14-15) as well as jackets/parkas (90% men's apparel) in LG through XXXLG. You can also make a monetary donation to Crossroads marked “Warming the Homeless” by mail or on our website. All donations are tax deductible. The deadline is October 31st.

Before you serve with action, begin by going through the reflection questions that can be found here. We go inward to reflect and then we go outward to serve.

Recommended Resources this Week:
Social Justice & Advocacy
Voting- Your Voice in Democracy
Your Superpower – VOTING

If you haven’t already, make a plan to vote in person early, vote absentee (by mail or by dropping off your absentee ballot at an in-person location), or vote in person on Election Day. Each option has rules and requirements that you need to be sure to follow. Jan Wilson has written about these before but has provided links in the article, Your Superpower. She also includes a couple of reminders about absentee voting. 
An Invitation from the NAACP: March to the Polls - Join the NAACP Loudoun Branch as we March to the Polls in October! Request your absentee ballot today and safely march with us to the Loudoun County Office of Elections to drop off your ballot in-person with a valid photo ID. Masks and social distancing will be in effect. 

The marches will be on October 17th, 24th, and 31st from 12pm-2pm. If preferred, you can march with us and vote early in-person as we encourage everyone to exercise their constitutional right to vote!  

Our route will begin at:
Walmart Supercenter Parking Lot
19360 Compass Creek Pkwy
Leesburg, VA 20175

We will then march to:
Loudoun County Office of Elections
750 Miller Drive SE, Suite C
Leesburg, VA 20175

Click here for a prayer and fasting for the election and the nation.
Taking Care of the Community
Wearing Masks - A Social Justice Issue
As we have said many times before, taking care of our neighbor is the most important thing we can do as Christians. Right now, one of the easiest ways we can do that is by wearing a mask. It is simple. According to the CDC wearing a mask and social distancing are our best defenses against contracting and spreading Covid-19.  

To me wearing a mask says, “I see you, you are important to me and we are in this together”.  
A limited number of masks are available for pick up at Crossroads. Please email Kathy MacKrell and we will get a mask to you for free or a small donation for those who are able. Masks are also available outside Crossroads’ Entrance 1, weekdays from 10:30am-1:30pm. 
Crossroads Native Plant Garden
Each week we are featuring a native plant in bloom in our native garden. The garden is flourishing and contains many pollinator plants that provide vital nutrients that keep insects alive and sustain them throughout the year. They also provide a safe habitat that is free from chemicals to help support the pollinator populations. If you live in the area, you are encouraged to check it out on your next nature walk or drive by. Click here for more information on native plants for Northern Virginia. You can also contact Crossroads' Native Plant Specialist, BJ Lecrone. Native plants can be purchased online at Watermark Nursery in Hamilton, Virginia.

For information on planting a vegetable garden and why pollinator gardens are important check out the following links:

This Week's Featured Plant:

Community Resources
Loudoun County Public Schools Meal Service
  • Walk Up Meal Service - 10:00 am – 1:00 pm
  • Daily Bus Delivery of Breakfast and Lunch Meals throughout Loudoun County
  • 2 Runs: 11:30 am – 12:30 pm and 12:30 pm – 1:30 pm
  • For delivery: Please visit the interactive map to identify the nearest bus stop and associated time for mobile service.
  • Daily breakfast and lunch meal service at 93 sites
  • Children and teens aged 18 and younger eat FREE of charge
  • Breakfast & lunch meals distributed simultaneously at both walk up sites and bus stops
  • Parent meal pick up available
  • Meal service available for childcare participants and students in attendance
Salvation Army Food Distribution at Crossroads
The Salvation Army will have a truck in the Crossroads parking lot to distribute food. Distribution is Wednesday, November 4th at 3pm the parking lot.
You will receive a FREE box of food that should feed a family of 4 for a week. We have 30 boxes to hand out so please come and get one. Please contact Kathy MacKrell if you would like to reserve a box.
Loudoun County resources are available for anyone in need of food. 
Please take advantage of the following organizations:
Loudoun County Health & Human Services has provided a comprehensive list of resources available to those in need. The link is here.

Contact the Loudoun County Information and Referral (I&R) program to get connected to vital health and human services information and resources in Loudoun County. The link is here.

Some vital resources are highlighted below.
COVID-19 Limited Rent Assistance
Loudoun County government has established a limited rent assistance program for Loudoun County households economically impacted by COVID-19. Check this link for details.

Loudoun Cares
Through their Information & Referral Helpline, Loudoun Cares connects residents in need with local nonprofits and agencies that can assist with a variety of health and human services that include rent/utility assistance, food, clothing, medical/dental, housing, job services and more. If you are in need of assistance, call the helpline at 703-669-4636 or click here for their website.

Unemployment and Employment Resources
Loudoun Workforce Resource Center provides information about unemployment benefits or other work-related topics. Click here for their website.

Crossroads Jobs is a non profit experienced in advising candidates who have challenges in securing employment. Counseling is available in English and Spanish. They will also assist those who need help filing for unemployment. All services are free. Click here for their website. 
Additional resources:
  • Sunday message: Watch here or on the GOTGo app
  • GOTGo App - Download from your app store by searching Crossroads GOTGo
  • Daily Texts - Text crossroads to 41411 to receive inspirational texts each day 
  • Daily Scripture, Prayer and Morning Focus - Sign up here
  • Online giving: Sign up or submit giving here
  • Spiritual Practices: Find them here
  • Prayer Requests: Submit them here
  • Imagine Well Being - Find online groups here
  • Small Groups: Find online groups here
  • Facebook - facebook.com/crossroadsnova
  • Instagram - instagram.com/crossroadsnova
  • Website - crossroadsnova.org