Missions Report for 2019

Thu, January 16, 2020

Happy New Year Friendswood Methodist! Welcome to a new year and the beginning of a new decade: 2020. My prayer for us this year is that our vision and sight come from God. No pun intended. I just wanted to take the time to do a recap of all that went on for Missions and Outreach in the church that I have the privilege of overseeing. So let us begin:

July 2019:
Bibles for Vets:
We purchased 528 Bibles for the Houston VA (Veterans Affairs). The Word of God for our service men and women.

UM ARMY:
We partnered with UM Army and had over 80 high school youth and adults go to Jasper, Texas to help those in need. We ended up building 24 wheel chair ramps and loving on those who had limited mobility in that town.

August 2019:
Operation School Supplies:
We gave 111 bags full of school supplies to Wedgewood Elementary School. Each bag contained: hand sanitizer, dry erase markers, folders, 9x12 construction paper, Ziploc bags, glue sticks, 1 inch 3-ring binders, and 0.5 inch 3-ring binders; as well as (53) $25 Walmart gift cards for the teachers in case they needed additional supplies.

September 2019:
Kids Hope:
Since 2013, Friendswood Methodist has maintained an incredible relationship with Wedgewood Elementary School through the Kids Hope mentoring program. Each year we start in September and have members of the church sign up to be a Kids Hope Mentor to help mentor an elementary school student. This current 2019-2020 school year, we have 27 mentors that provide a weekly, one-hour mentorship with a student. We continue to mentor our student until school lets out at the end of May.  

October 2019:
Personal Care Packages:
We asked the congregation for personal care packages to give out to those in need of food assistance from our food pantry. Each package included: shampoo, toothpaste, toothbrush, deodorant, disposable razors, and a bar of soap. We were able to provide over 325 personal care packages for the food pantry ministry. In 2019, we gave out 467 personal care packages to families in need.

November 2019:
Operation Christmas Child:
Each year we partner with Samaritan’s Purse through Operation Christmas Child. In 2019, as a church we packed 574 shoeboxes and as a drop-off center we collected 2,000 shoeboxes. These shoeboxes are shipped all over the world and are given to children ages 2 to 14. They receive the shoebox full of gifts and are told the true story of Christmas: the birth of Jesus and how he came to reconcile the world back into a relationship with God.

Family Valley Mission Trip:
We had 12 members of Friendswood Methodist go to the Mission, Texas area to help out a Hispanic United Methodist Church. There our team helped build the church a kitchen since they are the center of their community. They installed flooring, counter tops, and cabinetry; textured and painted walls; worked on plumbing and installed appliances; replaced and installed fencing; and worked on minor electrical issues. This mission trip is a great way for families to do missions together.

Thanksgiving Baskets:
Each year we put together Thanksgiving meals for families in need in our community. In 2019, we made 25 Thanksgiving Baskets for 25 families. We included turkey breasts, butter, rolls, pie shells, cereal, stuffing, instant potatoes, noodles, mac & cheese, cranberry sauce, gravy, canned fruit, apple sauce, pumpkin pie filling, mushroom soup, green beans, corn, sweet potatoes, and beans. The food comes from our food pantry and/or is purchased with donations for the food pantry.

December 2019:
Christmas Joy Party:
We invited 35 families to our annual Christmas Joy Party. We had about 150 family members (32 of 35 families showed up) and 110 volunteers come to make this event a great success. There we fed the families food; provided games for the children; and the parents received (1) $50 HEB giftcard for Christmas dinner,  (1) $25 shoe store giftcard (from DSW or Footlocker), and a certain number of $50 Walmart gift cards that corresponded with the number of members in the family (e.g. a family of 4 received [4] $50 Walmart giftcards). We were able to fund raise (35) $50 HEB giftcards, (35) $25 shoe store giftcards, and (162) $50 Walmart giftcards. We also did a toy drive and received over 150 toys. When the parents went to the toy store, they were able to get each of their children a toy. We could not have done this without the support of the 10 adult Sunday schools and the congregation; as well as the Girl Scouts, Cub Scouts, and Scouting BSA.

Light of Hope:
Our Light of Hope benevolence ministry fundraiser brought in $12,097 in donations. This year we added credit card as a donation option and that alone brought in 25% of our donations. See Chart Below. We partnered with Bright Beginnings and they decorated 2 out of the 6 ornaments we put on our LOH Tree.

All Year Long Ministries for 2019:
Blood Drive of 2019:
This year marks a decade that we have partnered with the Gulf Coast Regional Blood Center to donate blood. We donated over 86 units of blood that will help save the lives of 258 people.

Weekend Warriors:
Our faithful Weekend Warriors worked on a housing project almost every single month in 2019. They helped different families in need in Alvin, Clear Lake, and Friendswood, TX. Over 20 volunteers would meet during the year at various houses to help improve the living conditions of those who were struggling to maintain their family dwellings.

Ushers and Greeters:
We have ushers at every Sunday service and special services held in the Sanctuary. We strive to have at least 8 ushers at each service (8:30, 9:45, and 11:05). Ushers typically serve one Sunday service, once a month but are welcome to serve more often. We are in need of more Ushers for the 11:05 service for 2020 and we need more greeters for all three services. If you are interested in welcoming the congregation and helping each service go smoothly please let us know.

Meals on Wheels:
An interdenominational ministry, we partner with other churches in the Friendswood area to help bring meals to those who have limited mobility or are unable to leave their homes. In 2019, our team of volunteers delivered over 600 meals to those with limited mobility. Our church’s rotation was every 9 weeks (6 times total) and our volunteers ran two routes (each route has one driver and one passenger). The teams delivered 10-12 meals a day, for 5 days (Monday – Friday). We need more drivers and passengers to continue in this ministry so please reach out if interested.

Food Pantry:
The food pantry at Friendswood Methodist is an anchor in the community. There are not many food pantry ministries in the Friendswood Area and we are fortunate to have such faithful supporters all year long bringing food and especially on our 5th Sunday Food Drive Days. Our food pantry is available to anyone in the Houston area who has financial need. We give each family 3 bags of food and 1 personal care package. In 2019, we gave over 1,400 bags of food to 467 families in need (1,425 individuals). Each family is welcome to come once a month to receive the food that our Lord has entrusted to us to serve.

Benevolence Ministry:
Through the generosity of the congregation of Friendswood Methodist we are able to provide a benevolence ministry to help those in our community (located in the 77546 area) with rent and/or utility assistance. When people have exhausted all their options for financial support, we are blessed to be in a position to provide resources for those who struggle to make ends meet. In 2019, we supported 32 families with rent assistance, 45 families with their electric bill, 22 families with their water bill, and 1 with their gas bill. Our primary source of income is through our Light of Hope Tree fundraiser in the month of December. As you can see in the chart below, this past year we brought in the most we have in the last 7 years. All glory to God.

Various Financial Supports:

Gideons International

$2,000

Medical Support For a Burn Victim: Costa Rica

$1,800

Missionary Support – CRU

(Formerly called: Campus Crusade for Christ)

$2,000

Kenya Missions – CIA Sunday School Class

$4,500

Methodist Children’s Home – Waco, TX

$2,000

Great Plains UMC Conference – Flood Relief

$2,500

UMCOR – Humanitarian Aid for The Bahamas

$2,500

Woodcrest UMC – Flood Relief

$5,000

Kids Hope – Mentor Sponsorship

$4,860

UM Army – Jasper, TX

$22,600

Family Valley Mission Trip

$4,000

 

Membership:

New Members for 2019

82

In 2019, we changed our approach to membership. Instead of holding a new members class every quarter, we moved to a one on one approach. I meet with each individual or family interested in joining the church at their home, my office, or coffee shop to get to know them better and go over the membership vows. The new member(s) then join at the conclusion of the Sunday service they attend.

Our Missions Verse:
“Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” – Matthew 28:18-20

Conclusion: 2019 was a great year for missions!  Looking Forward: Let us pray we continue to be faithful to the Lord for missions in 2020.

Blessings and Godspeed,
Rev. Sam McRae
Pastor of Missions and Outreach