SERVE our Community

HOMELESS MINISTRY UPDATE

Dear Brothers and Sister’s in Christ,

Hope all is well!

Remember that our Father is always calling us home, no matter what we have done with our lives – Read Luke 16:11-32 The Parable of the Lost Son.

Update on the Homeless Ministry – June 12th and July 10th –

We were blessed with three [3] new servants – Thanks Joel, Carla and Marty.

As a ministry of Presence, we share the Love of Jesus through simple acts of kindness, please read our last post for details on how we serve.

In this note I want to highlight a few individuals we have the pleasure to work with, meet with and know. [I have changed the actual names, for their privacy].

  • For the last several months, Patricia and her family have provided us with a Van to complete our trips, 60 to 80 PB&J’s and her time to help shine the light of Jesus.

  • Beverly is one of our Senior Saints who has been making PB&J’s for years.

  • Martha is one who has served for many years in many different aspects and for years has been responsible for coordination and supervising our children during VBS with the providing and assembly of hundreds of the Hygiene Kits that we hand out to the Homeless.

  • Many, Many other servants – Thank You for a Job well done, This is where we receive our strength – For in Nehemiah 8:10 it states that ‘the joy of the Lord is my strength’. I believe by serving God, to his praise and Glory, The Lord is truly joyful.

 

In June, while downtown, the Lord led us to Lamar. Lamar is an older gentleman that had not eaten a meal for several days. He also was in pain. Lamar had lost a leg after being hit by a vehicle and now wears a Prosthesis. He shared that is Leg was raw where the Prosthesis rubbed the skin from walking a lot looking for a job and he asked if we could get him some Epson Salts up at Publix.  There were only three of us in the Van, so we asked him along and while two of the team were in Publix picking up the needed supplies Lamar shared his story. He was one of thirteen children on a sharecropper’s farm in south Georgia. When he was 9 years old, all the siblings were in one room with there mother, when his father came into the room and shot and killed his mother. From 9 to 16 he was in foster care and then on his own.  From there different labor jobs, then hit by the vehicle and lost his leg, addicted to drugs, then prison where he got his Prosthesis. He had a hard life, and on the streets, he is a hard worker, it is not easy. When the others joined me, we gave him the Epson Salts, some Neosporin and bandaging. When we got him back to where we picked him up, we prayed over him, and he wept. We waited while he regained his composure [he said he could not let the others see him this way] and then he thanked us.

·         We have known Ray for several months now, always happy to see us and very thankful, last month you could tell he was ‘tired’, not just tired, but ‘tired’ [he still thanked us].

·         Mr. Lenard, on our last trip was coming far up the street while we were closing up at ‘Trophy Shop’ and one of our new team members saw him coming and we waited. When he caught up with us, we served him the Food/ Hygiene Bag and some lemonade and just listened and learned. He was full of Joy and Praising God the whole time he talked. He shared, that during Christmas time he gathered Mistletoe and was able to earn some money to help him and other homeless in the area.

·         Uno is from Africa and has an accent. We met Uno several years ago, and at first thought he was greedy because he was always returning and asking for more, but then we realized that he was not gathering for himself but for others. We first met Uno at the Recovery Center and now we see him at the loading docks. He is always full of joy when we seem him. He asks for Trash bags and is always cleaning up areas he attends. Uno is full of the Spirit.

·         Two months ago, Cowboy and then last month Susie died of Drug overdoses. So much pain, such a hard life.

Simple acts of Kindness – Priceless!

Thanks for all that help with your presence, giving, service and prayers. Please keep the following in your prayers - See Prayer List.

God Bless – Love you with the Love of the Lord,

Craig,

Prayer List - Please pray for – a better and growing relationship with Jesus, forgiveness, healing [physically, mentally, spiritually and relationally], broken families, daily bread, jobs, homes, a hedge of Protection, Peace, Joy, supernatural power of Love of and by God in their lives – Raymond, Tony, Synya, Ashley, James, Bobbie, Russell, Imanieshie, Rashad, Jerry Smith, Kenneth Buford, Arnold [stay clean, peace, closer to God], Jabez, Mama, Lindsey, Wendell, Rashida, Michael Wright, Dr. Robinson, Brenda, Caley, Daryl, Lee, Andrea, Oscar, Tammy, Sherry, Tip, Jackie Hall, Mike + 2, Tony, Muck Dog, Ronald, James, Manny, Lamar, Umo, Tennessee, Clyde, Bobby, Judy, Sean, Willie, John, Cup Cake, Rick + 6 to 8, Lee, Jerome, Eric, Chris, Ernest [needs a home], Jay, Bernardo, Adrian, Donald, Johnny Dee, Al, Marie, Irvin, Juan & John, Stan, Stacy, Keith Butler [Cowboy], Stephanie, Dave Kurtraka [Healing], Austin, Kayla, David & Crystal plus, George, Tyrone & Staminal, Danny, Tim, Darren, Michael, Brian, Pico, Edward, Sean, Jimmy, Ken, Steve, Chris, Tony, Torrance, Ashley, Mark, Mr. Lee & Joe London, Larry, Eric, Michael, Tori [Cap. Pres], Ernie, Gabriel, Bobby, Sergio, Kevin, David, Corey, Kim, Ray, Fernando, Mackey, Henry, Freddie, Terry, James El, Brian, Michael/ John, Harold, Golden, Ken, Rashida, Deaf man, NASA, Evangelist, Sister, Mike, Booker, Beverly, Simonyus, Rodney, Roddey, Brandon, Jamie, Johnny, John, Steve, Robert, John, Daniel, High, Showba, O’lady, Scott, Infinity, Byron, Mike, Baddish, Timothy, Scott, Davis, Gloria, Lanita, Melissa, Timothy plus 6, Michael, Brian, plus 1, Amanda, Jimmy, Austin, Family of Women that past away from overdose, Terry, RJ, unnamed. Praise God for your presence and your many miracles, most unseen and those that you share – for your Glory!

Homeless Ministry Update

 

I thought it was time for an update on the Homeless Ministry. 

 

In February and March on the second Saturday of the month we had a small team go down to Atlanta and a few camps in Cherokee County to serve the Homeless. [We missed January because half of our delivery team had Covid – all is well!] It was cold and wet, so we distributed Blankets, Coats and Sweatshirts along with Hot Soup, Food and Hygiene Bags of Grace. We are always well received, and the presence of Jesus is with us. In February we had one man come forward and he wanted to receive Jesus Christ in his heart and become a follower. So, we walked him through the steps of excepting Jesus in his heart as Lord and Savior, and now he is a brother in Christ. Please keep John Tidwell in your prayers for God’s Grace and Direction.

 

Some may wonder what the Homeless Ministry is about – 

It is about a warm blanket or sweatshirt when it is cold, a warm cup of soup or hotdog or peanut butter and jelly sandwich when you are hungry, a clean pair of socks, saying someone's name and listening, sharing a prayer or the word of God, a simple act of kindness; it is about Jesus's followers touching others with His presence - this is what the Homeless Ministry is about.

 

In the last 21 years God’s servants, the members of Hickory Flat Church and other churches have touched the hearts of over 37,000 Homeless men and women (and some children). Last year we missed two (2) months because of COVID, but then realized that COVID did not stop the need but only increased the need for the Homeless, so with prayer we started back, and we served approximately 1,200 homeless men and women.

 

What is new for the HFUMC Homeless Ministry?

We are active supporters of the Homeless Coalition Cherokee County. In mid-2019, a group of United Methodist Churches in Cherokee County, recognized the growing Homeless population in Cherokee County and were lead to create an organization which would 1st get to know of who are the homeless and what are the needs and at the same time, get to know who are the existing organizations that are now serving the needs of the Homeless in Cherokee County and then try to create the ‘Gap’ programs that fill in the missing needs and to connect all the resources, without duplication, to Lovingly help individuals and families to a more fruitful life off the streets, out of car or warehouse or a camp. As these ‘Gap’ programs are identified and established, we hope to be prepared to step in and fill in some of these needs. The first ‘Gap’ program that has been initiated by the HCCC is called ‘Project Roof’.

Project Roof is working with Must Ministries, to fill temporary housing needs until Must Ministries can locate individuals or families in a better housing situation as healing and growth takes place.   

 

How does the Homeless Ministry work? How can I help?

It takes the hands and feet of many in small and large ways. 

  • Some collect soaps and shampoos from when they travel and donate these.

  • Blankets are donated every Christmas and as hearts are lead along with Coats and Sweatshirts.

  • Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwiches are made for every trip downtown [2nd Saturday of the month].

  • Food Supplies such as Hotdogs, Buns, Chips, Banana’s, Lemonade are donated for every trip downtown [2nd Saturday of the month].

  • Homemade soup is prepared every Saturday during the colder months [October – April].

  • Hygiene Kits are assembled [approximately 120 each month] before each trip. This is often completed by Boy Scout and Girl Scouts, during VBS or as others are lead.

  • Socks are donated during Easter and as some are lead [we hand out approximately 1,600 pairs in a year.]

  • Donation of a Van for our travels.

  • A team of individuals [approximately 6 – 10 people] every 2nd Saturday gather to prepare the food and pack out for our trips out.

  • A team of individuals [approximately 4 – 8] every 2nd Saturday gather to go and serve the Homeless.

  • Above and beyond the tithe giving for the Homeless Ministry.

  • Donations of Books and Bibles.

  • Donations of Reading Glasses.

  • Someone to give a devotion before we deploy to serve.

  • Prayer warriors for the Homeless and team.

 

If you would like more information, please contact Craig W. Sollenberger at cntsollenberger@att.net

 

Thanks to all that help and pray for the Homeless.

 

Below is our prayer list from our last two [2] trips – please take several minutes and pray for the Homeless by name and for their need.

 

Thanks, and God Bless,

 

Craig

 

Please pray for – a better and growing relationship with Jesus, forgiveness, healing [physically, mentally, spiritually and relationally], daily bread, jobs, homes, a hedge of Protection, Peace, Joy, supernatural power of Love of and by God in their lives – Tony, Mike, Michael, Mac, Matt, Bryant, Erick, Anthony, Sleepy, Jimmy, ‘Pig’, Ken, Derrick Wilson, John, Victor, Sherry, Eric, Don, Calm, Johnny, Bennett, Allen, Adams, Demetris, Peaches, Mariah, Cold Feet, John Tidwell, Curtis, Roosevelt, Adrian Knocks, Kenya, Umohetteho, John[Zen], Terry, Corey, Stephanie, Anemia, Shaggy, Jay, Richardo & Robin, Judy, Patricia, John, Jerry, Sharon, Jamorrow, Richard, Gary, Rick, Gary, Lee, Fernando, Kiza, Tony, John, Donald, Banks, John, John, Lorenzo, Frederick, McKenzie, Ardis, Paul, Roddey, Eddie, Vincent, Corey, Gregory, Solomon, Ryan, Mike [family, provision – size 12 tennis shoes], Flat, unnamed[asleep], Michael, Gavin, Lee, Encory, Tip, Smokey, Sammy, Dave, ‘Post off’, Latwan, Abebone, Fitzgerald, Jackson, LD, Michael[family], Robert, Cynthia, Lady, Shannon, Robert[healing, forgiveness, find you], Mr. Benny, Ernest, Tevin, Reggie, Lassalle, Wayne, Eric, Gary, Gaylon, Chris, Artis Powell, Cup Cake[Melissa], Patricia, Gregory Zachery, Louise, Philly Gordon, Walter, Princess, Malcolm, David, Allen, Chris, Frederick, Michael, Ryan & Michele, Rob Melton [Veteran/needs a phone], Dave, Corey, unnamed.