Hopewell Borough church congregants are playing hooky from worship services on Nov. 4, not for lack of interest, but because they are volunteering to help out with some community service projects.
The annual Sunday of Service, sponsored by the Hopewell Council of Churches, is geared toward congregants of the five Hopewell Borough churches, but all Hopewell Valley residents are invited to join in and volunteer. Church membership is not a requirement.
The Hopewell Council of Churches is made up of the Hopewell United Methodist Church, the Hopewell Presbyterian Church, the Calvary Baptist Church, Second Calvary Baptist Church and St. Alphonse Roman Catholic Church.
The purpose of the Sunday of Service is to bring together church members and the community to go out and spend time on community service projects that will help those in need.
“Hopewell is a generous community whose residents have a healthy awareness of their blessings,” said Cathy Peterson, the president of the Hopewell Council of Churches. “We are called to care for others.”
The day will kick off at 9:30 a.m. with a gathering at the Calvary Baptist Church, 3 E. Broad St. Volunteers will leave for their projects and meet later at 5 p.m. for a dinner and community celebration hosted by the Hopewell Presbyterian Church, 80 W. Broad St.
“Feeding the hungry, clothing the ill-clad, visiting the forgotten and comforting the sick are all acts that transcend religion,” Peterson said. “We are eager to see what it looks like when the whole community comes together for this purpose.”
The volunteers will spread out in the community to work on a variety of projects – packing lunches, making soup mixes and collecting canned goods for the area’s food pantries and soup kitchens. They will tie blankets for Project Linus and visit The Atrium nursing home.
They will take part in a 5K walk to help provide clean water to a hill tribe in Uganda, and help with shoe-pattern cutting to provide shoes for Ugandan children who are ill with a parasite known as “jiggers.”
Volunteers will sort and pack winter clothing to help Syrian refugees through the Bosnian winter. They will work on a Habitat for Humanity work site.
The Sunday of Service “gives the community a chance to interact with people of faith in service to the world,” said the Rev. Laura Steele, pastor of the Hopewell United Methodist Church. For church members, it is a reminder their mission extends outside of the walls of the church, she said.
For information about the Sunday of Service or to volunteer on any of the projects, contact Lucy Ducko at 609-466-0758 or email at email@example.com