In 2014, we made regular efforts to more out into the community and to find more ways to invite the community to join us.
Extending ourselves to the community
Our monthly Simple Suppers are gaining in popularity with about 50 to 60 people attending these Friday meals. These are win-win-win: We parishioners get together to cook, our community connects with us and each other over a meal, and the money we make goes to help grandmothers in Africa who are raising their orphaned grandchildren. A bowl of soup, a plate of lasagna or a cup of stew has these far reaching effects!
Growing community by growing a community garden. We’ve signed an agreement to co-operate with Fulton Place Community League in the development of a community garden on the east side of the church. This summer, community members of all ages will be invited to seed, weed, nurture and harvest from this garden.
First annual free Christmas Community Dinner. What started out as an idea blossomed into a free Christmas Community dinner enjoyed by more than 200 people at Hardisty School on Dec. 13, 2014. The turkey dinner connected community and connected eight Greater Hardisty area churches who came together to plan this community connection event. Plans are underway to do it again next year.
Monthly church services at Hardisty Nursing Home. Rev. Jonathan Crane and many parishioners take part in bringing church to those who can’t come to us.
Making ourselves known and available via the web and Facebook. Our website and Facebook presence have encouraged people to attend a service. The website is a modern day billboard with regular updates on events at St. A’s and examples of how we are living our mission.
Exploring how our church building and land can best be used to help us fulfill our mission: To live Christ in community through service. We’ve had exploratory discussions with representatives from the Diocese and community serving agencies. Discussions continue.
Pie making classes. A suggestion from our Strength to Strength weekend to have one generation to teach another the art of pie making resulted in a successful fall class.
Providing gathering space for groups providing music for young children, adults doing yoga, a community choir and for grandmothers reaching out to help African grandmothers raise their orphaned grandchildren.
Emmaus Road Gathering offers contemplative prayers and a potluck meal, Sundays at 5 p.m.
Contributions to help the community:
Advent offerings: Socks, socks and more socks! We took bags of socks to the Youth Emergency Shelter, Win House and the Bissell Centre.
Christmas Offering: We contributed $1000 toward No Room at the Inn that provides safe, affordable housing to our neighbours living in need. The funds go toward fixing a leaky roof at Citrus Court, which provides housing for women and men living with mental illness.