A Moment for Mission
“We were saved in hope. If we see what we hope for, that isn’t hope.…But if we hope for what we don’t see, we wait for it with patience.” — Romans 8:24-25, CEB
In the Florida Annual Conference, a group of elementary school students is grateful for the United Methodist Peace with Justice Sunday offering. Two years ago, the group dubbed “PINK Girls” received a conference Peace with Justice grant for $3,000. So, who are the PINK Girls?
They are Pretty, Intelligent, Nice and Knowledgeable elementary school students making a difference where they are. They are mentored, helped with academics and encouraged by the Women In Ministry Network, an ecumenical group in Gainesville. Their mission is to enable the girls to take responsibility for their lives and to speak out on issues.
Participants learn how to restore community as part of the United Methodist Peace with Justice initiative. The focus is on meeting educational needs, reducing bullying and teaching nonviolent communication. This is accomplished with resources, field trips and celebrations during the school year. They participated in such activities as the Martin Luther King Jr. parade and Black History Month. They turn stumbling blocks into stepping-stones.
May 30 is the official date for Peace with Justice Sunday in The United Methodist Church, but it can be celebrated at any time. Fifty percent of the special churchwide offering benefits annual conference Peace with Justice ministries. The other half assists similar work related to the General Board of Church and Society.
Thanks to Peace with Justice Sunday, PINK Girls learn to value who they are, appreciate their gifts and talents, and speak truth to power.
Loving God, thank you for the gift of hope. May we—through our Peace with Justice Sunday gifts—offer hope for a more promising future. In your name, we pray. Amen.
From Discipleship Ministries: Pentecost Sunday — Living God, you are the Lord of all! Only you can send your Spirit to bring us new life. You graciously speak your word of hope in times of struggle and uncertainty and in times of joy and peace. We are grateful that you are continually at work in our lives and the world to fulfill your promises. May our giving today show our trust in you. We pray through Christ, our Lord. Amen. (Acts 2:1-21)
Two years ago, the Florida Annual Conference Creation Care task force received a Peace with Justice grant for $500. The money was used to purchase 54 double-walled metal cups with a plastic and foam-free logo, 100 buttons and 500 stickers with the same logo.
This was used to promote the plastic and foam-free resolution that passed during annual conference sessions and to expand Creation Care ministries in the local church.
In 2017, the General Board of Church and Society gave a grant of $5,000 to Allendale United Methodist Church of St. Petersburg for a project focused on shutting down the school-to-prison pipeline. That amount came from the half of the offering shared with Church and Society for grants for congregations around the world. The other half stayed in the conference.
Peace with Justice witnesses to God’s demand for a faithful, just, disarmed and secure world. Celebrated on the first Sunday after Pentecost, Peace with Justice Sunday enriches lives. Thank you for your generous gifts!
Adapted from “PINK Girls Learn to Make a Difference through Peace with Justice,” Alma B. Manney, PWJ coordinator, Florida Annual Conference, May 28, 2020. Used by permission.