At St. Andrew’s, we believe in putting our faith to work by helping others in our community and in the world. There’s always a way for all ages to be involved.
Bagged Meals for the Homeless
Every few weeks, we gather in the church kitchen to make sandwiches and prepare bagged meals for the homeless. This is a results ministry – the fruits of our efforts are in the hands of those in need within two hours, thanks to the good folks at ASPAN. Upcoming meal prep dates are July 23, August 27, September 24, October 22 and November 26.. All ages are welcome! Questions on this ministry may be directed to Marcela Scott at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Non-Perishable Food Collection
Each Sunday we collect non-perishable food, which is brought forward at the Offertory and blessed before being taken to AFAC. Needs are great in Arlington for food assistance, and our part is to contribute something of our bounty to help feed the hungry. Please make it your habit to bring something for the food basket each week; this is a great way for parents to show children that we thank God for what we have by helping others. The collection baskets are located at both entrances to the sanctuary (in the Narthex, at the back, and in the Lounge, on the side).
Plot Against Hunger
St. Andrew’s took an unused plot of land and turned it into what was the first church garden to join the “Plot Against Hunger” program sponsored by AFAC. Parish volunteers plant, water, maintain, harvest and deliver produce to AFAC. Families volunteer together and there are occasional programs to introduce children to the stewardship of gardening. We regularly contribute over 1,000 pounds of produce annually. Questions on this ministry may be directed to Dave Smith at email@example.com.
Meals on Wheels
Volunteers are always welcome to deliver a hot and a cold meal (prepared by others) to homebound Arlingtonians. This well-organized and vital ministry allows people to live independently, at home, for as long as possible. Volunteers are given meals and a delivery route. Questions on this ministry may be directed to Janey Cartmell at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For the Christmas season, St. Andrew’s participates in the Salvation Army’s Angel Tree program. Individuals and families adopt an angel, shopping for NEW clothing, gifts and toys from the wish lists of Arlington’s most needy families. Watch the E-News for dates and instructions for this year.
In late summer we collect backpacks and back-to-school supplies for residents of the Arlington Partnership for Affordable Housing residences. Our offering was blessed, along with the backpacks of our own children, at a Sunday service before delivery to APAH.
Nine St. Andrew’s missioners spent April 13-20, 2015, in Haiti. We went to meet and get to know our partners there and to learn about the conditions on the ground. The first two days we spent traveling to Port-au-Prince and visiting Diocese of Haiti institutions in the capital city, including Holy Trinity Cathedral, St. Vincent’s Center for the Handicapped, the Foyer Notre Dame, and the convent of the Sisters of the Society of St. Margaret. In Leogane, we also visited the Nursing School and St. Croix Hospital.
The main focus of our trip, however, was to visit St. Peter’s School in Berault, with which we have a partnership. To do so, we spent five days in Cherident-Grand Colline in the guest house at St. Matthias Parish with the Reverend Frederic Menelas. Since late 2013, we have been working with Father Fred to support a school lunch program at St. Peter’s School, which is part of the geographic area of his parish. Berault is in a very remote, mountainous area, and we had to hike or ride donkeys for an hour and a quarter after we left our cars at the road! While there, we met with students in each class and with the principal and teachers; and we served lunch to the students. We came away with a deeper understanding of their strengths and their challenges. Needs there are great and resources are scarce, so we are now looking into ways we can strengthen our Haiti outreach program.
The highlight of our trip was Sunday morning worship at St. Matthias’, a three-hour celebration of the Eucharist with five choirs, a band, flowers, incense, chanting, and warmth and welcome. We truly saw Christ in peoples’ eyes, and it was a profound experience for all of us!
Mosquito Nets for Africa
Malaria is a widespread cause of death, particularly for children, and especially in sub-Saharan Africa. Episcopal Relief & Development has a highly successful program for the distribution and training in use of malaria nets. We have been part of their educational program on malaria prevention, and proceeds from the 2012 Outreach Carnival purchased many nets for the program.