Friday, June 8, 2012

A Big Gift

This week Zion received a major gift of $10,300 from a local philanthropic group called 100+ Men on a Mission.  
100+ Men on a Mission, as it’s name implies, is a group of 100+ men in our community who meet quarterly.  Each man pledges $100 each quarter to a charity that the majority of men vote to support.   The names of three charities are drawn from a hat at each meeting.  Those three charities are permitted to make their case.  Then the men vote.  The winner receives $100 from each man.  It’s a great concept and you can read more about it on their website: 

Matt Lenaghan, one of the guys in our church, spoke eloquently on our behalf at the 100+ meeting.  We’re thankful to 100+ Men, to Matt, and to God for his provision in this unique way.
Zion received the funds this week during an ice cream social at Douglas Terrace Apartments.  Douglas Terrace was a good location for the event because that’s where Zion’s latest outreach efforts to our community started two years ago this month.  It was a moving experience to be with the kids we met back in those early days and with the new kids who have moved in recently.  We took the opportunity to register kids for Bible School and Art Camp this summer.  

You can see the flier we prepared this event:
So how will the money be used?  It is our intention to use part of the gift as a challenge grant for another van.  We intend to challenge the congregation this summer to raise $5,000 which will all be used to purchase a badly needed second van.  The response to our outreach efforts continues to be amazing.  But we need more transportation capacity to get people to Zion.  This spring we started renting a second van and it’s expensive.  Even with two vans it takes 2 hours to get everyone to church on Wednesday nights.  Sunday mornings we’re running our van twice, having a second van will certainly make things easier.  
Some of the money will be used to purchase some supplies and furniture that are needed for our Wednesday night tutoring program.  
Some of the money will be used to purchase some beds for needy people in our community.  It seems that not a day goes by without at least one request from Zion for a bed.  Hopefully we can meet our current need for beds (about 12) and have a few extra for the coming months.  We’ve been so blessed to receive so many gently used beds from people.  Right now, the demand is far exceeding our supply so it will be a wonderful gift to be able to get caught up.  
Some of the money will be used to prepare for fall when we resume Wednesday night community meals and the Back Pack Buddies program that supplies kids identified by the local school with meals on the weekends.  
We are very thankful and very blessed.  One of the best blessings is the joy that comes when someone from the outside sees what you’re doing as important; important enough to give $10,000 toward.  That’s been a big boost at the end of the school year to us and motivates us to prepare with diligence for the fall.
And our outreaches continue this summer.  Remember the almost weekly activities for kids as well as Bible School and Art Camp and our two scheduled outreaches to Douglas Terrace on July 1 and August 26.  
Please keep Zion in your prayers.  Thanks for reading.  God bless you.  PJ

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