You are invited to give of your time, talent and treasure in these ministries of our church:
The Preble Street Soup Kitchen: On the first Saturday of each month, volunteers are invited to arrive at 2 p.m. for prep or at 4 p.m. for serving the meal. This includes serving the meals and drinks and clearing the table once the person has departed. There are also other jobs available including serving food “on the line,” serving drinks, and assisting in the kitchen. And clean up is always helpful! Dinner is served from 4:30 p.m. to 6 p.m. If you are interested in helping with this ministry, please contact the Preble Street Soup Kitchen.
The Micah Project: The Mission & Outreach Team provides financial support to many organizations through the Mission Fund and the Mission Budget. This year, M&O invites all members of the congregation to participate in doing justice together with more than money. Through a series of service opportunities with your church family, we hope to love kindness together. M&O hopes to provide semi-regular opportunities for our church family to volunteer together with area projects. Learn more here.
The Cape Elizabeth & South Portland Emergency Food Pantry: Our year-round Food Pantry depends upon in-kind donations by congregation members and friends to continue to serve the dozens of local families who need these services. We encourage anyone joining us for worship on Communion Sunday (first Sunday of every month) to remember to bring a gift of food for the Pantry. Donations of food can be dropped off any time during regular church office hours. This includes four annual Emergency Food Drives due to the increasing needs of our local community. The food pantry is open every Tuesday and Thursday from 10:30 a.m. until noon. Visitors are welcome one time per month.
The Children’s Closet: This “closet” offers free clothing obtained through donations to children who need them. Like the Food Pantry, the Children’s Closet relies on the in-kind gifts received from members and friends. Donations of clothing can be dropped off any time during regular church office hours. The Children’s Closet is open the first and third Wednesdays and Saturdays of every month from 9 a.m to 11 a.m. Visitors are welcome to come twice each month. This ministry was started by church members in 2003, and then was continued under the leadership of the Portland Area Mothers and Fathers Club.
Thanksgiving Baskets: On the Sunday before Thanksgiving, members of the congregation bring food to be donated to families in need. After church, the food is sorted into baskets that are distributed to the families, along with a turkey.
The Giving Tree: At Christmastime, you will find a Christmas tree in the sanctuary. It holds envelopes with Christmas gift wishes from youth at the Longcreek Youth Development Center. Members of the congregation take the envelopes and later place Christmas gifts for the youth under the Giving Tree.
The Mitten Tree: This same tree is then used to collect winter accessories. Warm hats, scarves, mittens and gloves decorate the Mitten Tree before they are delivered to those that need them to stay warm during the winter.
The Mission Mall: The Mission Mall is an alternative idea for gift giving where donations can be made to one or several charities in honor of those we love – to better the lives of those in need. By choosing one or several non-profit organizations from the Mission Mall shopping list, you can make a check payable to First Congregational Church for the total amount of your giving. You will be given individual gift cards indicating the name of the charity to whom you are donating. These cards can be sent or given to your gift recipient. This annual event can be found at our HollyDaze Bazaar.
Social Witness Ministries: This is a structure that allows for members of our congregation to engage in justice issues through individual Witness Groups. With the support of the Mission & Outreach Team, Social Witness Ministries maintains regular communication between the Witness Groups. Focused on facilitation and oversight, Social Witness Ministries allows each Witness Group to set their own goals – whether they are long-term or short-term goals. There are many justice issues that interest us. In the past this has included the Green Action Group and the Nonviolence Concerns Group. Currently, we have two witness groups including the Fair Trade Group and the Diversity Committee. As members express an interest in particular social issues, they are always welcome to start a new witness group. To learn more, please explore How to Start a Social Witness Ministry.
Angels Program: Members and friends can volunteer to be “angels” to other members of the church with particular needs. Contact Kathy Sahrbeck.
Lay Visitors: This is an opportunity to provide direct, practical assistance, usually to elders and shut-ins.