Rebel Rodriguez, Arvada, Colorado’s Woman of the Year, and Little free food bank!

Rebel Rodriguez is the 2017 Arvada Chamber Woman of the Year.

Here in Arvada, Colorado our woman of the year, Rebel Rodriguez runs an amazing food bank serving disadvantaged residents and Arvada’s homeless.  She also stocks an equally amazing little free food bank on the corner of Grandview and Olde Wadsworth at the Rising Church.  The Blessing Box.

Inspiring me to make snack and lunch bags for our children and homeless.

Thank you Rebel for your community service, to read more about Rebel go here to Rebel’s article.

Operation Christmas Child

 

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Each year our little community at Simpson United Methodist Church fills shoe boxes with surprises for children in need of a smile.

Operation Christmas Child is a project of the international relief organization Samaritan’s Purse. Donations of shoe boxes filled with small toys, hygiene items, and school supplies for children who do not receive gifts, children affected by war, poverty, natural disaster, famine and disease; and to children living on Native American reservations in the U.S.

The program started in the United Kingdom in 1990 by Dave and Jill Cooke has expanded and since then has delivered gift-filled shoe boxes to over 135 million children in more than 150 countries and territories.

Some fun things I found this year?  A fluffy puppy purse with for some lucky girl (I wanted to keep it for myself and secretly named it Henry), and fold up back packs with about 30 different smiley face emoji decorations, purple for girls and blue for boys.

Thrift Store Rescue and Origami

imageFound:  one package of premium origami paper.

Cost:  $0.99

imageUse:  donated to church.

The church has two uses.

The  candle lighting area for concerns or celebrations.   The small dish of folded origami crosses, take one after you light your candle as a remembrance.

The monthly card ministry.  Each month’s recipients receive an origami surprise.

 

2015-11-15 Messages Received from Sermon by Tezenlo Thong “Lessons from Hannah, Our Mother of Faith”

“Lessons from Hannah, Our Mother of Faith”

(1 Samuel 1:4-20; 1 Samuel 2:1-10)

Messages Received:

  • Find God’s message in your heart
  • Share God with others
  • Rejoice in answered prayers
  • Prayer is how you live your life
  • The God in us. to share is goodness
  • We should pray not only for ourselves but for those in our lives and those in need.
  • Pray without ceasing
  • Shocking statistic about our Veterans, there are more death by suicide than deaths in war – combat
  • Shocking statistic about U.S. prisons, we have the largest prisons in all the world, mostly populated by minorities, with the prisoners feeling no future and no hope

 

2015-11-15 Sermon by Tezenlo Thong “Lessons from Hannah, Our Mother of Faith”

“Lessons from Hannah, Our Mother of Faith”

(1 Samuel 1:4-20; 1 Samuel 2:1-10)

Today’s lection is the last of three weeks that focuses on women at the margin of society. Like Ruth last Sunday, Hannah is a woman who was marginalized and discriminated for reason beyond her control. She was barren or childless, and it was a shame for a woman not to bear a child. In the Bible, God is said to be one who opened and closed the womb, and there is no biblical story about an infertile man. So like many cultures, barrenness is considered a woman’s problem, not a man’s. Barrenness or infertility is thus construed as a divine hand or curse. Now, having a son would validate Hannah and restore her status in society.

In many male-dominated cultures, having no children, especially male children, was a sign of failure in life. It is seen as lack of a future because the “bloodline” is continued through the male child. Walter Brueggemann in The Prophetic Imagination says that barrenness is a metaphorical reference to “a loss of a future and therefore to hopelessness.” He says that “the notion of barrenness may be taken as a condition of despair in our society.” Indeed, it could be taken as a condition of our churches today. Many churches lament that they don’t have young people, youth and children. These are our future who have vanished and have very little or no interest in church. Where then is the future of the church? Hannah’s barrenness, wilderness, emptiness or insecurity of the future is perhaps a reflection of the state of the church today.

Also think of so many people who experience a deep sense of the lack of a future ahead of them. They see no way forward. Think of the veterans who suffer mental problem with no hope for future. Think of undocumented aliens who face deportation and separation from their loved ones any moment. They may be working hard, but their future is grim and uncertain. But the good news is that God “opened” Hannah’s womb and she gave birth to a son who became one of the greatest prophets. The church is called to be hope for the hopeless, to hold out hope and make a way for those who see no way.

Tezenlo Thong, Pastor
Simpson United Methodist Church