Christ Church is committed to serving our neighbors locally and internationally. Here are some of our on-going initiatives.
July is WATER MONTH at Christ Church!
What does this mean? It means that our outreach efforts and our adult forums will work hand-in-hand to focus on how we can:
- Provide drinkable water to those in need – what can we do to ensure that homeless families in our area have water to drink on hot summer days?
- Learn to conserve our own water usage – how much water do we waste when we brush our teeth?
- Protect our water from pollution – did you know that Montgomery County has over 1,500 miles of streams?
- Increase our awareness of global water problems and solutions – how do we help people in Nepal, sub-Sahara Africa, and other places obtain clean, adequate water for their homes, crops, and animals?
The Outreach Committee hopes to reach into our church community and welcome the assistance of parishioners of all ages who have ideas or experiences about the water crisis.
- Have your children developed projects about water in school?
- Have you traveled or worked in places where water is scarce?
- Do you know about projects to preserve water source s, preserve streams and rivers, desalinate water, and reforest land?
Christ is the living water, so working together we can both bring the water of life and clean, accessible water to people in our region.
- Arcola Elementary:
We have partnered with the Linkages to Learning program at Arcola Elementary to provide school supplies, snacks, food bags for the Thanksgiving and Christmas breaks and “angel gifts.”
We donate supplies for the summer camp program at Arcola that provides children two meals a day and fun, fun, fun! From painting to water balloons, the children enjoy their special time in camp thanks to Christ Church and other non-profits.
Our generous parish sponsors around 60 backpacks, filled with school supplies, for those children identified at Arcola Elementary who do not have the means to purchase supplies on their own.
For more on Arcola Elementary School, visit the Arcola website.
- Comfort Cases:
Did you know that over 3,000 children in Montgomery County enter the foster care system – EACH YEAR? They often arrive at night with only the clothes on their backs or a few cherished possessions stuffed in a plastic trash bag. They are often, disoriented, frightened, tired, and hungry. They are not going to a familiar home for an overnight stay or slumber party like many of our children do. They are going for an extended period of time – maybe even for the rest of their childhoods – into the foster care system. Truly, this is a tough transition. The organization, COMFORT CASES – has stepped in to ease the transition and ensure that children start off in foster care with basic age-appropriate belongings they can call their own. Comfort Cases provides these children with a duffel bag filled with necessary items such as pajamas, blanket, stuffed animal, book/coloring book, toothbrush/toothpaste, shampoo/conditioner, and other needed toiletries. We collect the items that go into a child’s Comfort Case. Our most recent packing day, June 3, 2018, we filled more than 70 bags and gave them to Bob Scheer, the founder of Comfort Cases. For any questions regarding COMFORT CASES, please contact Lauren Robinson email . Also check out the Comfort Cases website – click here
- Bethesda Cares: In addition to the many cases of water, socks and toiletries that were donated to Bethesda Cares to share with their clients, the Bethesda Cares Sandwich Brigade continued to make sandwiches for the homeless the first and second Saturdays of each month.
- Rebuilding Together: The last Saturday in April, parish volunteers participate in the annual Rebuilding Together Montgomery County work day! Multigenerational teams of volunteers meet at the selected sit for a day of down and dirty carpentry, raking, digging, painting, scrubbing, etc. to repair and renew the home of someone in need. In 2018, in partnership with other community resources, we worked on a group home for young adults.
- Nyumbani: We hosted a NIGHT OF CULTURE – KENYA STYLE to benefit the Nyumbani, Programs for Children and Caregivers affected by HIV/AIDS in Kenya. We are planning our Second Annual KENYA NIGHT, October 20, 2018.
- Episcopal Relief and Development: Once a year, our parish’s Outreach effort focuses on supporting Episcopal Relief and Development (ERD), the worldwide relief agency of the Episcopal Church (see below). Our parish generously donated $1,786 for ERD in 2017.
- Heifer International:
For over 20 years, the children of our parish and their families have fed Agnes their pennies in hopes that the monies collected will buy a cow, a goat or even a basket of chicks for Heifer International whose goal is to help families achieve self-reliance by providing them the tools they need to sustain themselves. Agnes reminds us that we have the power to give a hungry family the training it takes to feed themselves and their children; to give a young girl a chance at an education; to empower a woman to have a voice in her community. To change the world, one family, one community, at a time. And it all starts with a gift — a cow, a goat, basket of chicks and so much more.
A more detailed description of recent outreach activities
is available here.
Episcopal Relief and Development
Working in partnership with the worldwide Church, ecumenical agencies and local organizations, Episcopal Relief and Development (ERD) saves lives and strengthens communities around the world. Their programs work toward achieving the Millennium Development Goals, which hope to reduce extreme poverty significantly in the coming years. Specific program areas include: Alleviating Hunger and Improving Food Supply; Creating Economic Opportunities and Strengthening Communities; Promoting Health and Fighting Disease; Responding to Disasters and Rebuilding Communities Worldwide and Domestically. Additionally, ERD is working in this country with parishes and dioceses in Disaster Preparedness. A great strength of ERD is it can respond quickly to disasters because partners are already there in the vicinity of the disaster worldwide. And ERD stays after the news media are gone to keep the long-term recover going. Members of Christ Church Parish Kensington support ERD through outreach donations, specific collections in response to disasters, and through the Gifts for Life program. For more up-to-date information, the website is www.episcopalrelief.org