Church Mission Project Benefits A New Direction | Community News

Immanuel United Church of Christ, 9815 S. Campbell Ave., has been part of the Evergreen Park community since 1956.

Over the years it has played an active role in the community – with a well-respected community preschool, a polling station, and even a classroom while Evergreen Park High School was under construction.

Emmanuel’s mission statement is simple: “To serve others and do the work of God.

With this in mind over the years, church members organize targeted missionary projects during each quarter of the year. COVID-19 has produced many lasting effects, including mental health. Emmanuel’s mission plans for 2022 are centered on this concern.

During the spring term from April to June, they turned their attention to domestic violence.

The United Church of Christ recognizes the denomination-wide observance of “Break the Silence” Sunday. In 2022, it was Sunday April 24.

Immanuel chose to work with and for A New Direction (AND) in Beverly because of its mission to serve domestic violence and to be a good neighbor in the community. The goal was to raise funds that AND could use as needed, and the congregation’s efforts raised $1,100.

To kick off the domestic violence-focused project, AND program coordinator Rita Ryan addressed the congregation at a church service in April, and information about domestic violence was posted at the church during the mission period.

Immanuel has led many purposeful mission projects, including: multiple food drives for Evergreen Park Food Pantry (450 food items and $700) and Operation Blessing at Alsip (225 pounds of non-perishable food items and $533); a collection of collars and leashes for a PAWS shelter; cleaning supplies, $450 in gift cards, 48 ​​item packages for a snack closet and $1,500 for the South Suburban Family Shelter; sets of double sheets, pillows and comforters, plus $700 for Sleep in Heavenly Peace in Oak Forest; $500 for the Pediatric Oncology Treasure Chest Foundation of Tinley Park; $800 for Hope Children’s Hospital; 575 face masks, 48 ​​bottles of hand sanitizer and $700 for The Night Ministry; 600 items of miscellaneous school supplies for Southeast Elementary School at Evergreen Park; and $1,000 for Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library, benefiting United Way of Elgin and Bourbonnais School District 53.

Expanding beyond the country’s borders, Emmanuel members participated in several “pack events” and raised $700 for Feed My Starving Children and $500 to purchase three treadle water pumps as well as five beehives of bees, six flocks of chicks, two colonies of rabbits and two heifers, as well as $1,500 for Heifer International.

For more information about A New Direction/WINGS, call (773) 253-7226 or visit the website at anewdirectionbmp.org.

Charles K. Eckert