First Church is committed to being a church that cares about the world around us and our brothers and sisters in the Greater New Britain community who are less fortunate.
A majority of our mission funds are given to the United Church of Christ’s Missionary Society of Connecticut, which disburses these funds to areas in need in the United States and around the world.
OSGOOD FOOD PANTRY NEEDS
Thank you to all who donated easy to prepare foods and snacks over the summer. During September we will collect Back to School favorites; tuna, peanut butter and jelly, juice boxes, pork and beans, packaged treats and soups. As always, any and all donations are welcome and we ask that you please be aware of expiration dates. Again, thank you to all who have contributed to this mission throughout the summer.
SOCKS, SOCKS, SOCKS!
For the fall we will collect all kinds of socks for men, women and children. Socks are the most requested item in shelters across the country. Many homeless people walk miles per day in order to survive, leaving their socks threadbare and damp. Please be sure to donate clean, newly purchased socks; they will be distributed to the clients of Friendship Service Center.
On Thursday, September 23rd, we will be back in the kitchen cooking up some wonderful home-made meals for the Prudence Crandall Center. The times are the same, so you may come at 10 a.m. to help prep and/or come at 4:30 p.m., when final preparations and cooking will take place. For those who wish, you may join our group for dinner and a time of fellowship, usually around 6 p.m. Please contact Judy if you have any questions.
“Shawls . . . made for centuries, universal and embracing, symbolic and inclusive, unconditionally loving, God. They wrap, enfold, comfort, cover, give solace, mother, hug, shelter and beautify. Those who have received these shawls have been uplifted and affirmed, as if given wings to fly above their troubles” ~Janet Severi Bristow, 1998
Since many are home and, possibly, knitting, please remember that our prayer shawl ministry is an outreach ministry. Prayer shawls are for those in our congregation who are ill or grieving and they are also for people outside our membership. If you have a family member or friend who you think might appreciate a soft, warm symbol of God’s love at this time, please let Rev. Margret or Kristine Lewko know and they will get you one. They are kept in large, plastic, sanitary zip bags. We ask that the shawls to be a rectangle, 18 to 24 inches wide and 60 to 72 inches long.
FUTURE MISSION PROJECTS
- FLEECE BLANKETS . . . In the fall, we plan to have a collection of bought or homemade fleece blankets for the Friendship Service Center and the Prudence Crandell Center. We’d also like to make time to work on them together. Making tie blankets is also an easy and fun project to do with kids.
- BOXES TO BOOTS . . . A few months back, we collected black socks for the Boxes to Boots collection, which supports those overseas in the military. On November 6th we hope to volunteer at their event at Beehive Stadium with our FCC shirts on!
On a more “hands on” level, we are a dedicated supporter of the Osgood Food Pantry. Through the generous food donations of our members, we strive to make the lives of those struggling with food insecurity a little bit easier. We have also been a long time supporter of Rebuilding Together (www.rebuildingtogether.org). This past year, through the Florence Morgan Fund, we gave a monetary amount at the level of a Platinum Sponsor and on Rebuilding Day sent a team of parishioners to help with the repair projects of a local homeowner.
The Friendship Service Center (www.friendshipservicecenter.org) has been a special organization to First Church members for many years. Our Annual Sneaker Sunday raises money for them and with a walk through Walnut Hill Park on that day, we try to raise awareness of the needs of the homeless in our city. We also participate in their Adopt-A-Family program and donate Thanksgiving food baskets and Christmas gifts.
This Fund’s charge is to distribute income from investments for foreign needs and for local and United States needs. This Fund can be added to at any time. It was begun in 1935 and small bequests were added over the years by women of the church who saw a special need for such a fund. Donations are carefully and happily distributed, usually twice a year.
Our projects for distribution overseas come from requests we make for unbudgeted needs through the United Church Board of World Ministries. Special needs of women and children are often considered before general needs. We pray that our choices over the years have done the most good where truly needed.
In the past year, the Caroline Aston Fund committee has made donations to local organizations including the Hungerford Nature Center, Literacy Volunteers, Food Share, Warm the Children, the Prudence Crandall Center, Warm the Children and the YWCA Strive Program; among others.