Our Christian Outreach Journey

Sharon Smith

St. John the Evangelist, Topsail

In my portrayal of our Christian outreach journey here at St. John the Evangelist, Topsail, I will liken it to a tree with many branches reaching out in all directions on an odyssey in recognition of deficiencies along the path, and our responsibility, though minor, in its curtailment. Lessons from Canon Jotie’s Sunday morning services, followed by his Bible study series, are a reflective catalyst in this animated trip. It is all about gathering together as parishioners continually and not just one day of the week. 

We have an active ACW association—energized not with the hesitation of the timid, but with the flourish of the daring—not just reaching out locally, but also to our foster child in a world often torn by conflict. 

The team is also ever mindful in recognition and keeping in touch with former members who are no longer active—especially recognizing birthdays and Christmas. Our sincere thanks to Stephanie and her choir for their participation in reaching out on these special occasions. 

Gail, a member of our team concentrates on the food bank in our area. In an effort to encourage donations she has erected a small evergreen tree at the church entrance. Each branch is decorated with a message indicating prioritized needs to encourage members of the congregation to pick an item for distribution. 

Maybe one of the most popular and deserving outreach activities that our church is involved with is the School Breakfast Program.

Six years ago, it was initiated by Rev’d Jolene Peters, our rector at the time, together with ten enthusiastic members of the congregation, including Shirley and Dave Glynn, Gertie Henderson, Bradean Mercer, Diane and Rex Hillier, Betty Hiscock, Freda Kennedy, Dave Morris, and Glenda Tapp. Many volunteers have followed suit over the years, while three charter members have remained constant—Glenda, Diane and Rex. Currently there are fifteen active members—five teams of three—who alternate every Wednesday morning to prepare and serve approximately two hundred students at Villanova Junior High School in Manuels, CBS with a nourishing breakfast. 

Food is provided by the Kids Eat Smart program, as well as generous local donations 

Here at St. John the Evangelist, we are very proud of our team for their perseverance in keeping this project active for such a long time. And I’m sure they are determined to continue with this outreach indefinitely. 

“Your people will be volunteers In the day of your power
In the beauties of holiness.”
Psalm 110: 3 

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