Mission and Justice
“Life’s most persistent and urgent question is: ‘What are your doing for others?’”
The purpose of the Mission & Justice Committee of First Presbyterian Church of Clarks Summit is to provide church and community members with the opportunity to serve as Christ’s disciples. Following Christ’s teaching, we seek to minister to those in greatest need, seeking equality, challenging injustice and working towards a world of peace.
We strive to transform our words into action through gifts of time, talent and money. As God’s children, we have individual gifts that allow us to respond in different ways, all of which are equally important.
Check out the Mission & Justice portion of the Bulletin Board in the Narthex for monthly information about mission & justice issues and programs.
News from the Mission & Justice Committee
The Mission and Justice Committee would like to thank everyone for their gererous contributions to the Peace and Global Witness Offering. You contributed $1,219.00, surpassing our $1,000 goal. One fourth of that ($305) is pledged to the Catherince McAuley Center in Scranton. The Committee decided to add $695 to the offering to bringe the total contribution to the McAuley Center to $1,000.
The Committee would also like to thank everyone for for their support of the Alternative Gift Market. The purchase of Fair Trade items helps third world artisans get fair wages for items they crafted, many times allowing their children to afford school. Providing animals from Heifer Project helps entire communities improve their lives, one family after another. Purchasing ASP candy assists teens in our community to learn how they can make a difference in rural areas of the US by repairing homes and building relationships.
International Mission Support at First Presbyterian
- Central European Mission - This year brought a significant change in our mission outreach to Europe. -more-
- Thailand - Leith and Carol Fujii teach English and art in an elementary school and host neighbors in their home as a community resource. Through their interactions they reinforce Christian principles, manners, and health. -more-
- Haiti - We are assising Ya Ya Jacques as he studies at Keysont College, and we contribute to Groundswell International. -more-
- Reaching the Pygmies Ministry - We are supporting a program for the Batwas Pygmies in southwest Uganda. -more-
Local Mission Support at First Presbyterian
- Bethel AME Church - Every winter, we assist the homeless shelter at Bethel AME Church in Scranton. -more-
- St. Francis Kitchen - We collect gently-used, season appropriate clothing to be delivered to St. Francis Soup Kitchen in Scranton. There is a marked box in Fellowship Hall for donations. We contribute financially to the kitchen and serve a meal monthly.
- Adopt-a-Highway - Our congregation is a part of the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation's Adopt-a-Highway Program. We are responsible for cleaning the top section of the Morgan Highway four times a year.
- Earth Care -more-
- The Voluntary Action Center in Scranton creates "Care Bags" to be donated to social service agencies in our community. We contribute travel-size hand sanitizers annually for the
bags which are distributed in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day.
- Pentecost Offering - Every year our church collects a special offering for Pentecost that goes to the Presbyterian Mission Agency to benefit children and youth. -more-
- Alternative Gift Market is an annual event in late autumn to promote alternative gift shopping. Participants include SERRV, Heifer International, Appalachian Service Project, Verve Vertu, Presbyterian Coffee Project, and Reaching the Pygmies Project.
- We collect donations for Souper Bowl Sunday on Super Bowl Sunday. Money contributed is given to the AEM Food Pantry in Dalton. Last year's Souper Bowl Sunday was a super success. In combination with the Chili Cook-off, we were able to give $832 to the AEM Food Pantry. Thanks to everyone who contributed. And don't forget, there is another Souper Bowl Sunday coming up on February 5. -more-
You may contribute to these programs using the green "Give Here" button.
- One Great Hour of Sharing
Peace and Global Witness
- Wednesday Church School Classes: Mission and Justice routinely contributes to the Christian Education program. Recent topics include: Domestic Violence, HIV/AIDS, Immigration, Haiti, Uganda, the Environment.
- Bulletin Boards: Mission and Justice maintains two bulletin boards outside the sanctuary.
- Presbyter: Mission and Justice provides monthly updates to the congregation through First Presbyterian’s Presbyter newsletter.
- For local volunteer opportunites, click here.
- Alternative Gift Market: This yearly event is held in late autumn to promote alternative gift shopping. Participants have included: SERRV, Heifer International, Verve Vertu, Appalachian Service Project, Presbyterian Coffee Project, and Pygmy Project.
- Presbyterian Coffee Project: For many years First Presbyterian has only used Free Trade/Fair Trade Coffee during Fellowship Hour between services and in the church office coffee pot. The coffee (and cocoa) is available for purchase at our cost.
- Earth Care Congregation: Our congregation has been designated an Earth Care Congregation through a PCUSA program. This program, in its fourth year, through the PCUSA Office of Environmental Ministries has congregations taking an Earth Care Pledge and completing activities and projects in the fields of worship, education, facilities and outreach. For example, fluorescent bulb recycling, replacing/upgrading light ballasts, changing to energy efficient windows. There are recycling bins in our kitchen for members and visitors to recycle various items.
- Pastor Ciceron in Haiti
- Denominational: Presbyterian Church (USA) has four special offerings during the year in which our church participates:
- Centennial Campaign: First Presbyterian Church in Clarks Summit celebrated our 100th anniversary in 2012, and our congregation completed a three-year Capital Campaign in 2015. One half of all raised funds will help to fund the two Mission Projects listed below. Both programs exemplify our commitment to programs that invest skills in underserved persons, enabling and empowering them and their families to thrive.
- Local: Our local beneficiary, the Post-Foster Care Program at United Neighborhood Centers of NEPA in Scranton, teaches life skills to those teenagers at the highest risk who have “aged out” of the Foster Care System in a two year program. Participants are referred by the Lackawanna County’s Children and Youth Department. Skills include completing high school, obtaining employment, budgeting, cooking.
- International: Groundswell International is the parent organization to many local organizations in several countries, including Haiti, which is our focus of support. The local organization in Haiti supported by Groundswell is the Partnership for Local Development Organization directed by Jean Baptiste Contave. Groundswell empowers people to build healthy farming food systems from the bottom up. We helped four rural villages in this program and a fifth with a microfinance program for rural women administered by Groundswell. Along with our Centennial Campaign donations of $20,000 to Groundswell for village development programs in the Artibonite Valley of Haiti, we also provided $5,500 to NaSonje [We Will Remember] Foundation in Gwo Jan, Haiti as startup funds for the NaSonje Women’s Micro-finance Program of which there are five women’s groups.
Includes, but not limited to: Bread for the World, Women’s Resource Center, Children’s Advocacy, SCOLA, and Souper Bowl of Caring.
All of our efforts are enhanced by the power of prayer. The Mission Yearbook published by the Presbyterian Church (USA) is a wonderful resource for daily prayer.
The Mission & Justice Committee meets the first Monday of each month at 7:00 pm. To learn more about and/or become involved with any of these Mission efforts, please contact the church office at 570-586-6306