We are happy to report that our Read & Feed program was a great success for our fourth year! We hosted 22 second and third grade readers from area elementary schools who had been identified as needing assistance with reading. We hoped to “jump-start” their fall schooling by providing them with 6 mornings of reading experiences as well as food for breakfast and lunch. We used most of our church to have the students read to us and to trained dogs, to have us read to them, to play word games, to sing songs and play games using music, to create various craft and science projects, and to have lots of fun! We sent food home for them and their siblings for the remainder of the two weeks as well as sent them home with books that were contributed by the congregation.
Parents were overwhelmingly positive about the program. All of the students were excited and enthused to participate.
We want to thank the nearly 50 volunteers from our church and St. Jude’s who made this outreach possible. Thank you to our congregation for their support of our mission budget that enables this type of outreach. We also want to thank Home Depot for supplying craft projects as well as volunteers to assist in their assembly. We want to thank Jet’s Pizza and Uncle Ray’s Dairyland for contributing the food for our final lunch; it was a huge hit!
On Wednesday, August 12, our mission outreach committee hosted a picnic at Silver Lake Park Beach in Fenton for the Whaley Children Center. We were pleased that 35 youth and 6 staff attended from Whaley! They had a great time and were very appreciative; they look forward to this picnic each year. We would like to thank the congregation for their support of our mission budget that enables this type of outreach. We would also like to thank the many members who contributed food and hosted the picnic. We would also like to thank Jet’s Pizza for contributing 16 pizzas again this year.
On Saturday, July 11, 2015, our church supported the Bastille Day Race in downtown Fenton. Each year, this race has generated over $18,000 for the Genesee County Habitat for Humanity chapter and brought thousands of visitors into Fenton. This year the race course was modified due to the downtown construction with the StreetScape project. The 15k race began at 7:45 am while the 5k run/walk began at 8:00 am. Both races were wrapping up by 10:00 am. Food and entertainment were available at the O’Donnell Park.
Our church supplied nine volunteers who assisted with traffic control at five neighborhood corners. Thank you to the volunteers for assisting in this worthwhile cause. Everyone had a great time!
We want to thank the 32 people who showed up to donate their blood, the 26 people who were able to donate, the Boy Scouts for assisting in setting up and packing up the equipment, the members who made cookies and the members who hosted the drive on Saturday, June 20. We had two first-time donors and two double-red donations (giving us credit for 28 pints). The weather was great and the donations went very smoothly in spite of the StreetScape construction. We expect the walk-in donations will increase in future blood drives when the construction is complete and when either the Art Walk or JingleFest are concurrent with our blood drives.
Our church’s team “Presbyterians With A Purpose” again helped raise funds to fight cancer in this year’s Relay For Life. We walked in memory of the people who lost their fight with cancer and in celebration of the people who have survived cancer! Almost everyone knows someone whose life has been affected by this dreadful disease. Our 24 team members have raised over $7500 so far this year with a Milford sales event still coming up in July. We are helping to find a cure for the many forms of cancer!
Tri-County Christmas In Action performed significant repairs to 4 homes of low-income or handicapped seniors in the Linden/Fenton area on Saturday, April 25, 2015. Thirteen adults and four youth volunteers from our church worked at a house on Restwood Drive in Linden. Our team repaired garage roof trusses, filled a hole in the yard from a pool, stained the house, deck and garage, and performed significant yard clean-up. Other volunteers at the house installed a new sliding deck door, strengthened two stairways, cut down a large mulberry tree, repaired a leak in the roof, replaced on fascia board, and re-leveled a brick walkway to the garage. The homeowner, who is an 83 year old widow, was very appreciative.
Did you know that a great number of children who are taken to Hurley’s Trauma Center for child abuse injuries are from Fenton and Grand Blanc? Did you know that more than 2000 cases of child abuse are confirmed each year in Genesee County? Did you know that 90% of that abuse is perpetrated by someone the child trusts? Did you know that one in ten children will experience sexual abuse before their 18th birthday?
For the entire month of April, Whaley Children’s Center’s Paint Our Town Blue and the Weiss Child Advocacy Center’s Pinwheels for Prevention campaigns aim to increase public awareness and to promote the prevention of child abuse and neglect.
Ways we will be doing our part at FFPC include ringing our church bell on Wednesday, April 1; planting a blue pinwheel “garden;” using blue table and room decorations and having blue napkins during coffee hour; wearing blue on Sunday, April 26; and, most importantly, letting others know about this tragic issue.
Funding is always necessary for Weiss and Whaley programs to carry out their work. Monetary gifts are always appreciated. Weiss also has a wish list of ongoing needs. Weiss is hosting a fundraiser on April 18th at the Durant Hotel called KiteTails and Cocktails; if interested, call Weiss for ticket information.
On February 28, our church began celebrating 175 years of Christian witness and service. We welcomed everyone to join in our celebration. We enjoyed lots of good food and fellowship as we welcomed back our two previous pastors PK and Dale, played historical games, and watched videos, Scottish dancers, a bagpipe player, and the Dibbleville Dolls. It was a warm way to celebrate an otherwise cold winter day.
On Saturday, February 7, eight volunteers traveled to the Shelter of Flint to clean and paint a one-bedroom apartment as well as to clean toys and the playroom for the children. Our tour demonstrated how well they assist their guests. The Shelter of Flint is a multi-faceted organization that provides much-needed emergency and transitional housing for the homeless as well as numerous programs designed to help the homeless find their way to a better life. Below is a picture of one of the volunteers cleaning the playroom as well as a picture of the outside of the apartment we painted.
Our members shared their Christmas Joy with the community and helped the Salvation Army raise some money so that more local families could enjoy Christmas. Our members smiled, sang Christmas carols and greeted shoppers at VG’s on Silver Lake Parkway as well as at WalMart on Saturday, December 13. We were again impressed with the generosity of our community through their donations to the red kettle. The mission committee wants to sincerely thank the many volunteers for making a warming the Advent Season in our community!