Caring for Neighbors – From a Distance

A message from Nayna Byers, Minister for Community Life
and Judy Birmingham, Minister for Mission and Outreach

Last week we attended a Webinar by the UCC called Caring for Neighbors – From a Distance, which provided some ideas as to how churches can support our congregations and communities during this time, which they referred to as the “New Normal”.  We reviewed the information from this meeting with Pastor Sean, the Moderator Team and a few others. We have identified some key areas where we felt our congregation could provide assistance.

In Our Congregation

The CDC has suggested people wear some sort of face covering when in public doing essential activities.  Several of our church members are involved in sewing sleeves that go over surgical masks, which you can remove and wash so that surgical masks can be reused.  If you have any fabric to donate for this project or would like to help, contact Judy.  Several hundred of these sleeves have been given to Plymouth Place and LaGrange Hospital.  If you have a need for one of these for yourself, please let Judy know.  We also have a small supply of masks which we can provide to you.  We know it is very important for many of our medically vulnerable people to wear these.

Prayer Chain

If you are not already on our email prayer chain, please consider doing so. This is an anonymous list. Prayer can be powerful. Contact Nayna Byers to be added.

Phone Calls

It is important for us all to keep in touch with each other.  Isolation is difficult.  Please participate in our video/telephone worship services and the Tuesday and Thursday check-in calls that Pastor Sean facilitates.  In addition, we would like to set up a calling tree to check in with each other and provide a listening ear.  We are compiling a list of our members and friends for this effort.  Please consider volunteering to be a caller.  We would like to rotate callers so we all get a chance to chat with each other.  This is also a good opportunity to pray together. Let Nayna know if you would like to be a caller.

In Our Community

A decision has been made to temporarily close the Lyonsville Food Pantry.  St. Cletus Parish in LaGrange has a food pantry that is open on Thursday evenings.  We will be donating all food that we have on hand to their pantry and they will be able to support the families who are currently using our pantry.  St. Cletus has a significant matching funds program and we would like to support this pantry as a congregation.  We encourage you to give directly to St. Cletus by going to this website. At this point a financial donation provides flexibility and is safer than food donations. Your dollars will also stretch further as St. Cletus is able to purchase food from the Greater Chicago Food Depository at a much cheaper cost than if you were to donate canned goods.  We will be placing a notice to our food pantry patrons on our church door that we are temporarily closed and referring them to St. Cletus.

The Good Samaritan Fund

We already have a Good Samaritan Fund that we support as a congregation.  This fund has been used to purchase food to supply our food pantry, to help people in the community who need assistance for shelter, gas, utility bills, etc, and other outreach needs identified. Now more than ever we encourage you to make a regular donation to this fund.  You can donate directly through our website or by mail. We anticipate that during this pandemic and after, we will have many opportunities to provide assistance to our community through this fund.