Serving the World

Walk for the homeless

“Christ has no body but yours, no hands, feet on earth but yours.” –Teresa of Avila

The Christian faith demands that we bring all our resources to bear as we seek to walk in the way of Jesus: our hearts, our heads, and our hands. Our faith in a loving and compassionate God must ultimately find expression in the good, hard work of service and justice. People at the First Congregational Church take that calling seriously. This is one of the ways that we become the body of Christ.

Our local and global Christian service ministries are coordinated by the Board of Mission and Action. Ongoing ministries are described below, and you’ll find much more on the church events calendar, including seasonal service opportunities like the Construct, Inc. Walk to Prevent Homelessness. To get involved or ask questions, contact Karen Lindstrom at (413) 429-6490 or email hidden; JavaScript is required.

Peoples’ Pantry

Each month on communion Sundays (first Sunday of the month), we respond with an active thanksgiving, processing offerings of food and money which feed hungry mouths through the People’s Pantry in Great Barrington. Members of the church also volunteer each week at the Pantry. Currently, the pantry is in need of the following:

  • Non-Perishable Food: oatmeal, cereal, canned fruit, canned meats/fish, pasta, dry beans, canned vegetables, soup, rice, peanut butter.
  • Household: dish soap, toilet paper, light bulbs
  • Personal Hygiene: tooth paste, shampoo, conditioner, deodorant

To get involved, contact Jeannene Booher, (413) 269-6073 or email hidden; JavaScript is required.

Green Team

Using guidelines from the Massachusetts Conference of the United Church of Christ, our Green Team works toward making our church more ecologically sustainable. This is a faith-based, justice-driven means to examine our carbon footprint and consider what we can do to become better stewards of God’s creation.

If you have questions or are interested in joining the team, contact Donna Jacobs (413-353-0027  or email hidden; JavaScript is required) or Mission and Action Chair Karen Lindstrom (413-429-6490 or email hidden; JavaScript is required).

Berkshire Co-Act

The Board of Mission & Action has begun cultivating a partnership with Berkshire Co-Act (Community Organizing for Action) and many opportunities to volunteer are available.  Co-Act develops grassroots initiatives guided by collaboration and community needs, supporting sustainability, coordinating collaborative action, and tapping the power of community.

Mission & Action will make a donation to Co-Act of $20/hour for every hour that a member of our congregation volunteers.

Individual Seed Grant Program

The Board of Mission and Action encourages all members of the church to prayerfully consider the ways in which God might be calling them to engage in acts of service and justice, particularly in new and creative ways. Sometimes great ideas need a financial boost to get off the ground. To that end, the Board offers micro-grants to support church members in short- or long-term service and justice opportunities. We are particularly interested in supporting new ideas, so let us know if you feel the Spirit moving you!

Ongoing Mission Support

Recognizing that God calls us to return a portion of the blessings we have received, the Board of Mission and Action supports more than a dozen nonprofits through our annual grant program, which supports service and justice work locally, nationally and abroad.

Johan de DeBesche and Sara Stackhouse in South Africa: http://physiojo.wordpress.com/

Photos from New Orleans Katrina rebuilding