This year’s special Thanksgiving offering will be sent to the Korean-American Senior Center for them to use in remodeling. The Seniors Association recently purchased a building. Unfortunately, it could accommodate only 60 to 80 people. They needed the building to hold 200 people so expansion is necessary. The cost is estimated to be $140,000. The center only had $100,000 available. This year’s Thanksgiving offering, expected to be between $15,000 and $20,000, will be given to help make up the difference.
Our church has three special offerings a year. All of them are dedicated to missions causes. The Christmas offering is given to the Lottie Moon foreign mission fund of the Women’s Missionary Union. (Lottie Moon was a Southern Baptist missionary who worked in China. She died on a ship while returning to the U.S. because of health problems.) The Easter offering is sent to the Annie Armstrong North American mission fund. (Annie Armstrong was a President of the WMU who laid down foundations for home missions fund raising.)
The Thanksgiving offering has not been dedicated to a specific missions organization. The Board of Deacons has allowed me to designate the mission project each year where the money can be used most effectively. Past offerings have been sent to Kosovo to help obtain medical equipment, to Paraguay to help a local worship center build a roof, and to Moscow to buy a building for training native seminary students. This year I felt the
Thanksgiving offering would be used best by helping remodel the Korean-American Senior Center.
Some feel that our church is indifferent to community activities. In a way that’s true. Our church’s mission is to reach out to nonbelievers and make them disciples of Jesus. I have been careful not to waste our resources by getting involved in activities which are not directly related to our mission. We have been involved in community projects when their goals and our roles in them were clear.
One such example is the Houston Youth Center, The director, Rev. Kim Byun Nyun, has been involved in prison ministries and youth drug rehab for years. He has been struggling with financial difficulties. I asked him why he didn’t seek government or private grants. He said that writing grant proposals took a lot of time he didn’t have. However, he contacted me recently and said he found someone willing to write the grant proposals. He wondered if our church would be willing to provide a full time salary for her, so she could devote her time working on the proposals. The board of deacons decided to support her for 6 months. When they receive grants the Center will be able to provide various services for a great number of youth in Houston.
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