"Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness
for they shall be filled." ~ Matthew 5:6
I love this Mr. Rogers quote. Perhaps we are
all thinking, "how can I help?" in this time of pandemic and now the trauma and hunger relief happening from the fires in St. Paul.
Our mission is to be "A caring community called by Christ to serve and live in faith." I have an exciting way that we can live into our calling right now and for the long-haul. Our mission partners, Bethlehem Lutheran in St. Paul overnight became a centralized location for hunger relief. All of the grocery stores within walking distance burned with the civil unrest. My dear friend and colleague Pastor Kirsten stated, "We essentially are the grocery store now. Your long-term partnership means so much to us! We need you even more now."
Here are specific ways OSLC is "being a helper:"
- Financial Giving: On our website, we have created a special account for relief aid to Bethlehem on the Midway. You can allocate giving specifically for this cause through electronic giving, or if you prefer, you may write out a check and put "Bethlehem Midway" on the memo line. They are partnering with a Food Bank and other resources into the future.
- Saturday, June 6, Service Opportunity: Mission & Outreach has authorized $2,000 worth of supplies for this cause.
- 11:30 AM on Saturday June 6th: gather (socially distanced with masks) at the church parking lot on the Blossom side (west parking lot). We will pray over the relief delivery that will be happening and the people in need.
- 11:45 AM depart OSLC parking lot and head to Costco in Woodbury.
- Noon: meet at the Costco in Woodbury. The staff at the store will shop for us and have the supplies ready. We will load large vehicles with $2,000 worth of supplies. (Pastor Karna needs your help as she drives a small Ford Focus) If you plan to help haul items, please let Pastor Karna know in advance so we know who to look for.
- Caravan to Bethlehem on the Midway to deliver our relief aid
- Weekly Opportunity: If you have supplies you'd like to be delivered, contact OSLC member Dave Shaw. He departs every Monday morning at 8 AM to cook for Open Hands at Bethlehem on the Midway.
- Mission Activate Team for Adults: We are looking for adults that are passionate about service opportunities like this. If this is your passion, contact Pastor Karna as this relief need is ever evolving and ongoing. We also have an on-going team from PEP that serves at Open Hands the first Monday of every month.
- Youth Mission Activate: Chad and the Mission Activate youth are also looking into ways they can partner with Bethlehem this summer to offer service opportunities.
- Pray for our world in need. Pray for healing, hope and transformation that Jesus' love is known.
We are also grateful that the Synod is also providing leadership in this situation. They are proactive in thinking ahead of long-term systemic ways of providing help. We imagine that we will also continue to have multiple layers of entry points to serve our neighbors in need and deepen our partnership with Bethlehem.
What a wonderful gift that OSLC can share the love of Jesus so powerfully in this hurting world. Thanks for being such an amazing congregation! Your love, prayers and servant's heart are making an incredible impact. To this date, we've released $19,000 of Mission and Outreach offerings to help the hurting including the Guatemala Gala, Valley Outreach and now Bethlehem on the Midway. We remain committed to our promise to disperse 10% of all our offerings to those hurting outside our walls so that the Gospel is proclaimed in words and actions. Thank you for sharing this incredible love of Jesus! We are making a difference.
Pastor Karna Moskalik