MISSION & OUTREACH TEAM
This team usually meets every third Tuesday at 7:00 p.m. in the Conference Room.
For over 100 years, the Christmas Fund for the Veterans of the Cross and the Emergency Fund has been a way to ensure that a light of love and hope will always shine for faithful servants of our church who find themselves facing unforeseen financial need.
We are grateful for the generosity of churches and individuals who contributed a total of $2,539,471 to last year’s Offering, enabling us to provide Pension Supplementation, Health Premium Supplementation, special grants for emergencies, and Christmas “Thank You” Gift Checks to over 1,000 individuals and families in need.
These funds are spent:
67% small pension supplementation serves 379 low-income retirees
15% health benefits supplementation serves 174 low-income retirees,
10% thank you gifts benefits 401 retirees
6% emergency grants benefit 49 current or retired clergy or lay employees in urgent need
On behalf of the hundreds of clergy and lay employees and their families whose lives were touched by your support of last year’s Christmas Fund Offering, we offer our sincere thanks for your generosity!
YOU CAN HELP REV. ANDERS
Everyone knows that Pastor Douglas Anders has been going through cancer treatments in the Houston Area. He flies in from St. Louis every other month, which you can imagine gets costly. We have researched and found a few ways that we can help out. You can purchase points on southwest.com and have them applied to his Rapid Rewards account, or if you have a Rapid Rewards account you can also transfer points from your account to his account. It takes about 9,000 points one-way to fly. If either of those are not an option you can still help. H-E-B actually has Southwest Airlines gift cards that can be purchased in different denominations.
If you can help, call the church office for more information.
OUR DECEMBER OFFERING:
CELEBRATION OF THE CHRISTMAS FUND
Jesus never mentioned clergy. We can’t imagine church without them.
Jesus had nothing to say about staff.
Jesus was mum on college, and seminary, on internships, and continuing education.
We want someone who’s trained in this stuff.
Jesus did not tell us to designate people to
love, care, visit, preach, baptize, marry, bury, teach, write, meet, make music, lead, organize.
We’re glad we did it anyway.
Jesus did not require us to have church professionals.
But thank God we do.
For preachers and teachers, Thanks be to God.
For childcare workers and nurses, Thanks be to God.
For music-makers and worship leaders, for administrators in all their kinds,
For church professionals of every kind, Thanks be to God.
God, you did not declare any of these positions necessary, and yet our life of praise and prayer is better because of them.
Thank you for their skills, their training, their conscientious ministries.
Bless our professionals, God.
Strengthen them for their work; continue to fit them for their high callings.
Show us how to support and care for them.
Help us to minister to them as they minister to us.
“The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not overcome it.” John 1:5
CHRISTMAS EVE OFFERING:
PEDIATRIC HEALTH CENTER
AT NORTHWEST ASSISTANCE MINISTRIES
NAM's Pediatric Health Center has been serving the community for nearly 25 years and offers high-quality medical care to children of all ages. NAM’s Pediatric Health Center is a value-based health center and not a volume-based health center. Our board-certified physicians and nurse practitioners center provide a full range of services, from preventative care to acute care.
The center consists of a unique partnership between NAM and the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth). While providing excellent care for its patients, the center also serves as a training facility for UTHealth Science Center students, as well as students attending other local universities and community colleges.
High-quality care, combined with affordability, places NAM's Pediatric Health Center among Houston's top-choice providers of pediatric care.
NAM's Pediatric Health Center is committed to assisting families in living healthy lifestyles. They believe that healthy eating, being physically active, getting a good night's rest and managing stress all have critical impacts on a child's growth and development. Therefore, they created a toolkit by using resources from British Columbia Mental Health Commission of Canada, to help a family live a healthy lifestyle.
To help with total health care, support is available with food, prescription assistance, medical equipment, baby formula, diapers, clothing, household supplies. In addition to this assistance, psychiatry and counseling services, Medical Case Management, Healthcare navigation, asthma awareness and prevention, adult screenings, vaccination programs are available.
NAM's Pediatric Health Center received the Quality Award for Excellence from 2013-2015 in four domains of quality: Well Child Care, Adolescent Well Care, Treatment of Respiratory Illness, and Asthma.
In March 2018, the health center was recognized by Superior HealthPlan as a Center of Excellence for Foster Care.
In addition, Dr. Lisa de Ybarrondo, a pediatrician at NAM’s Pediatric Health Center, was awarded the Dean’s Teaching Excellence Award from the University of Texas Medical School for excelling in their teaching of medical students.
The mission team has numerous choices of organizations that do outstanding work on behalf of others. Honoring the babe of Bethlehem for our Christmas Eve offering, we select a place that serves infants and children. We could think of no better place than NAM’s Pediatric Clinic to share to receive this special offering, on a special night, to honor a special birth.
The Joy Of Giving
Somehow, not only for Christmas,
But all the long year through,
The joy that you give to others
Is the joy that comes back to you;
And the more you spend in blessing
The poor and lonely and sad,
The more of your heart’s possessing
Returns to make you glad.
The words of John Greenleaf Whittier are as significant today as they have been through the ages.
As Christians, especially at Christmas, we celebrate that joy of giving.
Immanuel United Church has, does, and will continue to celebrate that joy.
The Mission team lifts up your participation in offerings. And we wish each and all a Merry Christmas.