MISSION OF THE MONTH
Isaiah Chapter 55, Verse 12 states: “For you shall go out in joy and be led forth in peace.’’
The prophet Isaiah invites us to imagine God’s peace in unlikely places. Trees clap their hands. Joy grows where sorrow once reigned. A world torn by enmity, strife and despair blossoms back to life. Lions lie down with lambs, and nations at war with each other come together in peace. Whenever the church gathers for worship, we are assured of Christ’s peace. We celebrate that we are connected, we are loved and we are not alone. We worship together and are fed from Scripture and at Christ’s table of peace.
After partaking of the feast God has prepared for us, we are sent out carrying the joy kindled in worship and challenged to take the peace of Christ into our world. No matter how large or small the world we inhabit, the joys of God’s presence empowers us to live joyfully within our communities and to bring peace to all around us.
As we go out into the world in joy and are led forth in peace, we are called to take bold and decisive action. We take action today by offering a blessing of our own. Through our participation in the Peace & Global Witness Offering, our church is extending Christ’s peace throughout our community — 25% of the gifts received will stay right here at First Presbyterian Church to build God’s house alongside programs such as Family Promise, Ridgewater Campus Ministry, Frontera de Cristo, Clearwater Forest and Presbyterian Disaster Program.
Another 25% will support regional efforts of our presbytery and 50% will go to the Presbyterian Mission Agency for its ministries of education and partnership with active peacemakers all around the world.
God’s peace, empowered by God’s joy, reminds us that we are connected to each other. We are not alone. Peace begins with each of us. Thanks be to God.
Frontera de Cristo
The Mission Committee now sponsors Mark and Miriam Adams in their involvement in the mission called Frontera de Cristo. Based in the sister cities of Douglas, Arizona, and Agua Prieta, Sonora, Frontera de Cristo works to build relationships and understanding across borders. People often see borders as nothing more than division, but at Frontera de Cristo, borders are seen as a place of encounter. Discerning God’s will, Frontera de Cristo serves migrants and community members on both sides of the border.
By demonstrating gospel values in all that they do, Frontera de Cristo seeks to build relationships that demonstrate God’s will, and build bridges rather than walls. So many people are migrating, seeking refuge and fleeing extreme poverty and violence. Our Frontera de Cristo’s goal is not only to address their immediate needs, but also to address the root causes of mass migration, creating safe and prosperous opportunities that allow our sisters and brothers to stay in the land they call home, if they so choose.
Through the building of community-driven partnerships with ministries and secular organizations in DouglaPrieta, Frontera de Cristo offers shelter, resources, education, emotional support, medical care, and new solutions. The hope is that everyone they meet knows they are made in God’s image, they are worthy of respect, and they are welcome here.
Frontera de Cristo also partners in ministry with Café Justo. Café Justo and its sister organization, Café Justo y Mas, operate on a fair trade plus business model. By removing the middleman who purchases coffee from Mexican farmers and sells it to large American corporations, our fair trade plus system creates an opportunity for farmers to be in control of the process from start to finish. From harvesting, to roasting, to packaging, all the way to your doorstep, the cooperative’s partners are involved. This optimizes the farmers’ profits in a way that creates a just and livable income, eliminates their need to head north seeking work, and allows them to stay on their land with their families. Frontera de Cristo has been proud to serve as a partner with Café Justo since its establishment in 2003 and with Café Justo y Mas since its opening in 2016, watching one man’s dream become a reality that provides new life for many through both.
Frontera de Cristo website: http://fronteradecristo.org/ Café
Justo Ministry partner info: http://fronteradecristo.org/cafe-justo/
Family Promise of
Family Promise of Kandiyohi County is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization which finds its origin from a national organization stemming from Summit, New Jersey. We are one of approximately 200 affiliates found in 43 states and Washington D.C. FPKC has partnered with 12 local congregations (and 13 support churches) to provide shelter, meals and hospitality to homeless families within the Willmar/Kandiyohi County area. Our goal is to do whatever we can to assist homeless families gain emergency shelter, daily meals, and partner with local agencies to equip families with the skills they need overcome homelessness. We believe that families need a “hand up,” not just a “hand out.”
Check out more of what Family Promise is and offers at their website:
We, at the First Presbyterian Church, have placed a Blessing Box at the front of our church at 316 Sixth Street SW in downtown Willmar and we are seeking donations from you and others to help our brothers and sisters in need. The following is a list of suggested supplies: Food items (non-perishable) -- canned goods, soup mix, cake mix, rice, cereal, noodles, peanut butter, snacks, ramen/instant meals, Hamburger Helper, mac & cheese, fruit, vegetables, bread/buns, baking items, condiments, coffee, juice boxes, seasoning items, crackers. Personal hygiene -- toothbrush, toothpaste, deodorant, shampoo/conditioner, soap, lotion, toilet paper, feminine products, tissue, Q-tips. Baby/child items -- diapers, wipes, baby food, baby cereal, pacifier, powder, lotion, bottles, powder formula. Misc. items -- pens/pencils, paper, seasonal items, gloves,books, small toys, gift items. Prohibited items -- home-baked goods, expired opened goods, alcohol, tobacco, sharp objects.
Every Second Wednesday of the Month (during the school year) our Mission Committee donates, makes, and provides a meal during the lunch hours (11-1:30) for students at Ridgewater College in the Ministry Department of the college!! The Mission Commitee is always willing to have volunteers to help out each month if available!! If so, contact the church office for more details.
Meals on Wheels
The First Presbyterian Church of Willmar we help out with Meals on Wheels. Meals on Wheels has been guided by a single goal since the first known U.S. delivery by a small group of Philadelphia citizens in 1954 – to support our senior neighbors to extend their independence and health as they age. What started as a compassionate idea has grown into one of the largest and most effective social movements in America, currently helping nearly 2.4 million seniors annually in virtually every community in the country. If you would like to sign up to help deliver Meals on Wheels, contact the church office.