For I was hungry, and you gave me something to eat. I was a stranger, and you invited me in. I needed clothes, and you clothed me. I was sick, and you looked after me. I was in prison, and you came to visit me. Whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers, you did for me. —Matthew 25:35-36,40The vision of Matthew 25 Ministries is to feed the hungry, house the homeless, befriend the stranger, and empower the needy within our local communities. In a spirit of servanthood and thanksgiving, consider the activities our parish offers close to home. Every St. Marker can serve the Lord through Matthew 25: at home or away from home, at regular times or at sporadic times, in the day or the evening, long-term or short-term. Please consider thoughtfully where to contribute your time and talents to some of the ministries listed.
Exodus World ServiceThe mission of Exodus World Service is to mobilize the Church to welcome and befriend refugees. Volunteer opportunities are available for individuals, groups, and families both for one-time, as well as longer-term commitments. There are three main programs:
- The collection and delivery of a Welcome Pack, which stocks the new apartment for every day needs, e.g. kitchen items, bedding, towels, etc.
- New Neighbor program, which is a 3-month commitment to befriend a newly arrived family and meet with them for an hour or so each week to help them adjust to life here. There are ongoing training opportunities available for this program.
- New Neighbor Conversations, where the volunteer meets with a refugee 1:1 to dialogue about whatever the focus may be at a given time. Sometimes it may just be for the refugee to practice English.
Fox Valley Pregnancy Center/Corbella ClinicThe Corbella Clinic is a pregnancy medical clinic that serves women and couples during and after an unexpected pregnancy. Volunteers advise and empower expectant women and couples. Additional information is available on the Corbella Clinic website, www.corbellaclinic.org
Hesed HouseHesed House is the second largest homeless shelter in Illinois. Located in what was once the incinerator plant for the city of Aurora, it now is a place to stay for the homeless and emergency living quarters for 165 to 225 adults and children. St. Mark’s joins another church once a month to serve dinner, lunch, and a hot breakfast. We serve at Hesed House the second Monday to Tuesday of each month. St. Markers can sign up in the narthex to provide food items and volunteer for food preparation or to serve at one of the following three shifts (7:00–11:00 pm on Monday, 3:00–7:00 am or 5:00–7:00 am on Tuesday). Ministry Contact is Deacon Steve Lowe, email@example.com. Additional information is available on the Hesed House website, www.hesedhouse.org
Lazarus HouseLazarus House is a community home open every day, located in St. Charles. It provides homeless and at-risk individuals connected to the Mid Kane County area with food, shelter, and support services. St. Markers provide volunteer assistance to the staff and residents of Lazarus House on the fourth Saturday of each month in the form of donated food and overnight support, and also serve a hot meal that evening. A sign-up sheet for our outreach is located in the narthex. Volunteers can elect to provide food, serve dinner, or spend the night assisting Lazarus House staff. Ministry Contact is Jon Dietrich, firstname.lastname@example.org Additional information is available on the Lazarus House website,www.lazarushouse.net
Riverwoods Christian Center/Fox Valley Christian ActionThe staff at Riverwoods partner with the local church in discipling youth in under-resourced communities of the Fox River Valley into a life-transforming relationship with Jesus Christ. Volunteers can either work as youth counselors or by financially helping disadvantaged youth to attend summer camp at Riverwoods. Additional information is available on the Riverwoods website, www.fvchristianaction.org
- January-canned fruit
- February-baby food
- March- Easter items
- April-canned meat & fish
- May-paper products
- June-canned vegetables
- July-rice and beans
- August-pasta and sauce
- September-breakfast items and cereal
- November-Thanksgiving items
- December-paper products