LOCAL CIRCLE NEWS
St. John’s Lutheran Church, Spartanburg
All Around in Circles…
Submitted by Cathy Pearson
When we were tasked with Fellowship opportunities during the pandemic, St. John’s Circles rallied. Prior to the pandemic, Circles would host fellowship hour after the 11 o’clock service and host supper hour prior to Wednesday Lenten services as just some ways we came together to promote camaraderie and a spirit of togetherness within the congregation. And then came COVID! Church became a virtual zoom session.
Our Circles began sending “Thinking of You” cards with personal notes monthly to our homebound members, those in the military, as well as those who were added to our church’s weekly prayer list. Some Circles sent cards also to those who were deeply affected by the COVID virus, those depressed due to those circumstances, and to both members and non-members who needed encouragement. One of our Circles made batches of soup and hand-delivered them to individuals in the community!
So many of our recipients were so appreciative of the kindness and thoughtfulness extended to them that we decided to extend this activity now that COVID rates have decreased and church is returning to a new normal. We have resumed hosting Lenten Meals and fellowship hour after our 11 o’clock services as well.
On Sunday, November 21, we held our Thankoffering Service at both 9:00 and 11:00 with all donations given to the Hope Center (previously called the Children’s Shelter). The Theme for that Sunday was “Shine the Light of Christ into the World.” Over 60 women (including young adults and children) participated in both services. Hundreds of dollars in donations and gift cards were presented to the Center.
We will continue to serve God by reaching out to others as we shine the light of Christ into the world.
Faith Lutheran Chapel, Pickens
The ladies of Faith WELCA have been busy bees. We continue to have monthly WELCA meetings in the evening with a devotional, program, refreshments. Best of all, going around the room and sharing our most recent God-moments.
This past fall, we had six ladies attend the Fall Foothills WELCA Conference hosted at St. Johns Church, Walhalla. Great program and luncheon!
Mission work we currently support is:
Pickens Shelter of Hope for the Homeless. The first Saturday of each month, we assist the DOK with providing a meal for the ~ 40 folks who seek shelter due to homelessness. As well we donate used clothing and various other items to assist with clothing and providing for those transitioning through the Shelter.
At Christmas, we go Christmas caroling to Nursing Homes and the homes of shut-in members.
We collect different items for the Dream Center each month like deodorant, detergent, toothpaste/toothbrushes, diapers, body wash. These are used in the Dream Center store and given to clients as they take classes to learn how get back on their feet during a time of homelessness.
The Pickens County Humane Society through donations of newspapers to line the cages, dog/cat food, blankets, cleaning cloths, bleach for cleaning cages, as well as providing monetary support.
And most JOYFUL of all, every 6 months WELCA collects and buys items through our JOY offering. We vote, using the ELCA Good Gifts catalog, on which items we want to purchase. In June 2022, we chose: chicks, honeybees, water filters, soap and sanitation supplies, and vaccines for children.
We are proud to be sisters in Christ doing ministry and mission through loving our neighbors and one another as we have become dear friends in our WELCA group; however, we always invite any new guests or visitors of FLC to our group - unless they are a man - LOL!
Martha Dorset, Chapter Secretary