A Moment for Mission
“You are indeed my rock and my fortress; for your name’s sake lead me and guide me.” – Psalm 31:3, NRSV
At any given time, an average of 50 children, ages 6-17, live at the Florida United Methodist Children’s Home. Family-style relationships are seen as essential to healthy development of social, relational and interpersonal skills.
“Our goal,” said Dennis Harper, campus life director, “is for (children) to master some skills, then move on to others.” The children earn rewards for appropriate behavior. They learn to follow directions, accept feedback, accept “no” for an answer, ask permission and master greeting skills.\
“Those are skills you have to have the rest of your life, anyway,” Harper said. “The majority of the kids don’t have those skills when they get here or were taught the improper way to do it.”
The goal is to equip teens aging out of the children’s home with tools to develop appropriate relationships with their families, neighbors and co-workers.
The lessons paid off for a young woman in the program who had a job interview at Wendy’s.
The manager asked the teen what she would do if he found her using a paper cup to scoop ice instead of the ice scoop. The applicant said she would look at the manager, listen to him, acknowledge what he said, then use the appropriate behavior.
“She did that, and she got hired that day,” Harper said.
The Florida United Methodist Children’s Home is one of the church’s many health and welfare ministries that benefit from the annual Golden Cross Sunday offering.
– Adapted from “Children’s home teaches more than ‘dress for success,” Yvette C. Hammett, Florida UMC, Oct. 25, 2019. Used by permission.
Loving God, you are our rock and fortress. Lead and guide us. Help us to set positive examples, mentor your children and, most of all, share your love. In your name, we pray. Amen.
From Discipleship Ministries: Fifth Sunday of Easter — Loving God, as we offer our gifts to you, we know you see us more clearly than the world sees us, or even than we see ourselves. We have made foolish choices, valued things that were not worthy, and yet you have claimed us, deemed us precious, counted us worth saving by the death and Resurrection of your Son. No gift that we can offer can come close to balancing out your relentless love, but we give them with a heart of gratitude. We give ourselves, in the name of the one you gave for us. In Christ, we pray. Amen. (I Peter 2:2-10)
Are you familiar with the United Methodist health and welfare agencies in your community? Do you know how they are supported?
One way is through the annual Golden Cross Sunday, observed annually on a date determined by each annual conference. An offering may be taken for health and welfare ministries in the conference.
According to the Book of Discipline (Par. 633), “This offering shall provide financial support to care for sick persons, older persons, children and youth, and people with disabilities. Special emphasis shall be given to aiding those ministries that provide direct financial assistance to persons in need.”
People in your congregation – and perhaps you and your family – benefit from health and welfare ministries such as hospitals, community-service organizations, retirement communities, and agencies that serve persons with disabilities, children, youth and families.
The Golden Cross Sunday offering is essential to these ministries and to the vital outreach each of them provides. Thank you!