MAY 25, 2021
Living our Core Value #3: An Active Faith
Mission Committee has an extensive reach

By The Rev. Lindsey Altvater Clifton and Norma Ferguson

The Mission Committee at First Presbyterian Church has a rich history of supporting a wide array of ministry partners. Through relationships with global missionaries, the committee’s reach has extended as far as Honduras and Rwanda, where students and teachers have benefitted from the church’s generosity (below: Rwandan school library ‘on the road’).
At the national level, First Pres has been committed to feeding hungry people through its participation in the Souper Bowl of Caring and the CROP Hunger Walk. We’ve also been connected to denomination-wide missional endeavors through annual PC(USA) special offerings and the work of Presbyterian Disaster Assistance.  
Closer to home here in the Lehigh Valley, the Mission Committee has provided volunteers for the Northeast Community Center’s after school program, offered monthly meals to folks experiencing homelessness (below), collected items needed by students in our school district, and supported countless other local nonprofits and ministries. The list is long!
Looking at the present and moving into the future, we hope to narrow our missional focus and deepen our ministry partnerships so that we can be part of creating sustained change in our community. It is a new vision of missional living that is well aligned with the church’s four core values. This shift will entail drawing mission into the center of our church’s shared life, and we are eager for the whole congregation to join us in exploring what this transition might look like.  
In the fall, we’re excited to be collaborating with the Discipleship Committee and Session to host a congregation-wide book read and discussion to jumpstart our discernment! Stay tuned for more information about that opportunity and the follow-up workshops that will help us identify our many gifts and assets, listen for our community’s needs, and imagine what God might be calling us to do together. It’s a season rich with possibilities, and we certainly hope you’ll join us for the spiritual journey as we seek to be Christ’s hands and feet in the world.
Current members of the Mission Committee include: Mark Ferguson (Moderator), Jackie Byrnes, The Rev. Lindsey Altvater Clifton (Staff), Norma Ferguson, Jane Mackie, Leslie Pohl, The Rev. Dr. Steve Simmons, and Froy Thompson.

We would welcome new members who feel drawn to ministries of compassion and justice! Contact us at mission@fpc-bethlehem.org.

This will be our last Spotlight for the time being – we will be on summer hiatus.
Look for us to come back in a new format!