The Peacemaking Offering this September supports two long-time PCPC ministries with both international and local impacts. This year’s offering is going to be dedicated locally to the FED ministry, and internationally to helping the village of Papoli, Uganda, through Village Partners International.
You can donate to the Peacemaking Offering, which runs through Oct. 7, through specially designated envelopes in worship, or by going to palmaceia.org/giving, and checking the “Peacemaking Offering” box.
Peacemaking Offering – Local Support in Tampa Bay
Our Feeding Every Disciple (FED) ministry supports local children and families who previously lived at the North Boulevard public housing complex.
Over the past 10 years, the FED ministry has been focused on feeding the children, physically as well as spiritually. Including the six families currently involved, we support 23 children each month! Your financial and volunteer support demonstrates the love of Christ in ways that these children would not experience otherwise.
On Sunday mornings, volunteers pick the school-aged children up at their homes and arrive at PCPC at 8:30, when one of the “Breakfast Buddies” team serves them a healthy breakfast. They attend the 9:00 Contemporary Worship service, and usually sit with Sunday School friends or with others in the group. Then it’s on to Sunday School, where they benefit from great student/teacher ratios and engaging activities! After a small snack, the volunteers drive them back home.
One Sunday each month, we provide groceries to each family and to three single adults who were former residents of the North Boulevard complex before it was closed. While intended to be supplemental, these staples help prevent food insecurity from impacting the families during the month.
We need $6,000 this year to continue this vital support.
These children face tremendous obstacles in overcoming the generational poverty. The FED Ministry continues to provide them with a loving, high-quality Church experience, in addition to other support services for the families. Please remember the Peacemaking Offering with your generous donation! We believe staying connected with these families is part of God’s calling to serve in our community.
Peacemaking Offering – International Support in Papoli, Uganda
“Feed the hungry, and help those in trouble. Then your light will shine out from the darkness, and the darkness around you will be as bright as noon. “
Eastern Africa continues in the worst drought seen in the last 70 years, with over 20 million lives at risk. With the lack of water, crops have failed, producing recurrent famine and starvation.
Imagine feeling the gnawing pain of hunger, so raw and intense, that it drives you to eat mud, or feed your child roots that you know may ultimately cause his death, but in desperation you know no other way to ease his hunger.
This is daily life for many in this world.
In our partner village of Papoli, Uganda, this fact was seen as stark reality last spring, as we learned of villagers starving in and around the area. The immediate need to bridge this time until the rains finally came was met by the people of this congregation, where funds were donated and sent to allow starvation to be held at bay. And lives were saved.
How to prevent this again?
We cannot change the climate. We cannot prevent the drought. But we can help to sustain the community during times of crisis.
Working with the community elders in Papoli, a plan to build a granary to store food during times of harvest, to be distributed during times of need, was initiated. This would allow those in the surrounding villages to have access to food, as well as produce an income source to help the sustainability of the community.
The first step in this process is to increase production of the small farms, with improved seeds, equipment, fertilizer, irrigation and training. As a cooperative project, the entire village would be included in this initiative. A small “farm store” for the community would serve this purpose. By allowing increased food production, and ultimately storing of the harvest, the devastating effect of famine could be curbed. And an income source would allow the goal of sustainability in the community to be addressed.
Witness and Service Committee has named support for the development of the Farm Implement and Supply Store the first step in this process, as one of the projects for the Peacemaking Offering this year.
Farming is the chief way of life in the village of Papoli. At this point, the cultivation of those fields, the hard work of hoeing, and tough ground, is done by men and women (often with babies strapped on their backs), with handheld hoes and picks. Imagine the labor involved. A gasoline-powered hand tractor would make a radical difference in their quality of life and would increase crop yields dramatically. PCPC plans to make this available with funds donated in this year’s Peacemaking Offering. This is certain to greatly bless crops, and provide for hungry people there through their own labors. It also will help to create sustainability. For $20,000-$25,000, we can build the relatively small shelter for the cooperative and supply the gasoline-powered hand tractor, and the starting capital for the seeds, insecticide, and fertilizer. How wonderful that we have the opportunity to make this kind of dramatic difference in the lives of our friends in Papoli!
In this time when there is much darkness in our world, each beacon of light shares God’s grace, and ultimately restores hope to mankind. And feeding the hungry, both here and in the world, shines this light forward.
“For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me.”
You can donate to the Peacemaking Offering through specially designated envelopes in worship, or by going to palmaceia.org/giving, and checking the “Peacemaking Offering” box.