2018 saw a growth in, not only the size, but of the dedication of the Missions Ministry. Four new members: Becky Halsey, Leah Moynihan, Jim Santsaver, and Janice Tondravi were welcomed to the Ministry, as was Deanne Bellinger in September. Each of them, along with Kris Collins and Jeannette Galvin, brought new ideas, energy, and compassion to the group. The first order of business was to reorganize the duties. It was decided that each member would chair at least one mission for the year. This helped with the distribution of the workload.
In keeping with our Mission Statement: “Our mission is to reach out to the outside community, as well as our own, to spread the Word of Jesus through kindness, hope, and fellowship”, we sponsored all of the following events/missions. Some of them were simply continued as in past years, others were past projects but changed a bit, and yet others were started (or in the process) with this year’s committee.
The Missions Ministry once again sponsored or assisted with:
- Honoring the American veterans. The ministry participated in Memorial Day’s placement of flags on each Veteran’s grave at the Bourne National Cemetery. Our dear friend Conrad Morel was one of the first recipients.
- the Christian Education Committee with Children’s Sunday. Chaired by Becky Halsey, the congregation was divided into four teams. These four teams created their own pizzas and a taste test for lunch was enjoyed by all. The day ended with a Make Your Own Sundae…a favorite of everyone.
- the Fall Fair by being the official, ‘unofficial’ greeters to the fair. Many thanks to Jeannette Galvin for making sure her team made every visitor feel welcome.
- the Out-of-the-Box. It was revamped this year, so instead of monthly collections, we:
- Sponsored a child at Easter time. Chaired by Kris Collins and Janice Tondravi, we were able to bless one little girl and her mom with a new wardrobe of spring/summer apparel and accessories.
- Sponsored a summer-long collection of school supplies. Over 860 items were collected and donated to the Attleboro and No. Attleborough school systems.
- Honored the upcoming birth of Jesus, by sponsoring an Advent Season collection of baby cloths and items to be donated to New Hope, along with $100.00 worth of diapers from the Missions Ministry.
- the church directory finally arrived and was distributed
- a $300 donation to Leah Moynihan for her fourth trip to Rwanda. This is a mission trip she takes every year to help women in need of medical care after childbirth.
- the Prayer Shawl Ministry was turned over to the Missions Ministry. Leah Moynihan chairs this ministry. She not only keeps track of shawls that are given out, but does follow- ups on the recipients. She also keeps inventory so that we are never caught short. Thank you all who donate their talents for such lovely shawls, and to Kris Collins for making the covers for them.
The Missions Ministry also worked on some new mission projects. They are:
- Inter-faith Ministry – chaired by Jim Santsaver. In the interest of gaining knowledge and strengthening relationships with other faiths, Jim has been researching possible ways to develop these inter-faith relationships. He is exploring internet dialogues, Inter-faith visits, and Inter-faith festivals, to name a few ideas. But the options are endless. So look forward to more info coming on this in 2019.
- Respite Program for Caregivers – chaired by Kris Collins and Leah Moynihan. This is a mission for any caregiver needing a little hand, whether it be: a home-cooked meal, picking up some groceries, help with some light household chores, or simply needing an ear to hear them. This program was briefly announced to the congregation, and as we put the final pieces in place for it, expect to hear a lot more from us and how YOU can help in 2019.
- Adult Sunday School class – again, chaired by Leah Moynihan. This is to be a class/discussion for the adults. Instead of a Bible Study, it will be a ‘reflection’ of that day’s sermon…thus the new name of it being, “Sunday Reflections”. It is the committee’s hope to offer this discussion twice a month after worship.
- And lastly, there was a lot of brainstorming for fundraising ideas, (‘bottles and cans’ and “Undies Sundays”); and missionary projects, (soup kitchens, spring/fall clean-ups, Habitat for Humanity, Veterans, Hasbro Children’s Hospital). Becky Halsey will be chairing the projects, so be watching, or listening, for any or all of these great projects in which YOU can help in 2019.
Special thanks to all of the members of the Missions Ministry who worked tirelessly to bring God’s work to all those in need. It was a pleasure to work with each and every one of them. We also thank the entire congregation for supporting our ministry throughout the year. Oldtown is truly blessed. Farewell to 2018, and welcome 2019.
Respectfully submitted, Cindi Barkley