Over 250 members of the Church That Matters in Sand Springs, Oklahoma, just outside of Tulsa, decided not to go to church on Sunday. Instead, they took part in the church’s annual “Don’t Go To Church Sunday,” community service project. They divided up into several teams and serviced the community in a variety of ways. Park cleanup, sorting donations for needy families, landscaping and light construction, were all part of the community wide effort. One team visited a local laundromat and passed out quarters, detergent, and softener along with an offer for prayer. You can read about their effort here.
In Ypsilanti, Michigan there are several churches doing various kinds of community outreach, including food distribution, providing clothing for those in need, working with incarcerated individuals and their families, and offering space for other community organization programs. When their services began to overlap, some of the pastors felt a need to begin coordinate their efforts. They felt it was important to understand they are not in competition, but they are all working for the same goal; to bring people to Christ. Working as a collaborative group they will be better able to serve the community. You can read more here.
In Sebastian County, Arkansas, several churches have been linked together through the CarePortal system, a computer program of the Global Orphan Project. This system is currently used by over 1,600 churches in 16 states and serves thousands of children. When the Department of Human Services finds families in need, they send out the request via the CarePortal. Those churches partnering in the system then seek a way to provide that need. The goal is to meet specific needs, offer mentoring, and prepare foster and adoptive families for the road ahead. You can learn more here.
Whitewater Crossing Christian Church in Cleves, Ohio, a church that’s been around since 1915, has developed a comprehensive community outreach program they call Solve 7. Their goal is to deal with seven issues that impede someone’s spiritual connection to God; food, clothing, family, education, health, slavery (in other parts of the world), housing. Whitewater encourages their members to participate in these programs, not simply donate money for their support. By taking this broad-based approach along with various community partners, Whitewater goes a long way toward creating a culture of service to God. Learn more here.