Monthly Project Hope


We offer a monthly intergenerational opportunity to participate together-side by side- preparing on-going and special mission projects. This group meets at Penn on Tuesdays, November 12 & December 17. Please note there will only be a morning session-10:00-11:00 AM. PLEASE NOTE THE NOVEMBER DATE IS CHANGED DUE TO OPERATION CHRISTMAS CHILD ACTIVITIES ON OUR REGULARLY SCHEDULED DATE.


NOVEMBER PROJECT HOPEWESTMORELAND COUNTY CHILDREN’S BUREAU. Throughout November, we will be collecting toys, books, underwear, socks, games, etc…for the children and youth (Birth-18 years) in our communities who are receiving services through WCCB.  Our donations will place gifts under their Christmas Tree. Please drop your items off at the Christmas Boxes located at our churches by Sunday, December 1st.  There will be no Project Hope selected for the month of December.



As in the past, we are participating in the Mr. Roger’s Sweater Drive. Since 2001 through the Children’s Museum, sweaters have been collected and distributed to families in need across southwestern PA. Sweaters must be clean and in good condition (no tears, missing buttons…). Both adult and children size sweaters will be accepted through Sunday, November 24th.



We will be collecting winter coats and accessories (scarves, hats, mittens & gloves) for the Salvation Army’s Project Bundle Up.  New and Gently used (clean with no tears, broken zippers, etc…) may be dropped off at the church no later than Sunday, November 17TH.   Please see Gwen or contact her with any questions at



You may have noticed that there are fewer products that have the Box Top symbol to clip. That is because Box Tops are moving to a mobile app. They are still accepting the clipped Box Top symbol during this transition, so please continue to clip these.  We are saving them for Bethesda Children’s Home as each one is worth at least 10₵.  When you download the app, you need to identify the school.  Please type in Bethesda Children’s Home.  It should come up as an option for Meadville, PA  16335.  Click on this and follow the tutorial.  The next step is scanning your register receipt (please make sure the date is included).  The app will locate all the items that are included in the Box Tops campaign and download them into Bethesda’s account.  Gwen has completed this process and will be available to assist.  If you don’t want to download the app, you can bring your receipt and she can use her app to enter it so Bethesda can earn the points.







Stitches of Hope


This congregation is blessed with many talented folks. Stitches of Hope is our ministry that includes sewing, knitting or crochet projects.  Patterns and details regarding material/yarn/thread requirements for projects may be found at the churches’ mission drop-off sites.

STITCHES OF HOPE – Tiny Hats for Tiny Babies

We are participating in Tiny Hats for Tiny Babies. As Sunday, November 17th is World Prematurity Day, we are planning to have our in-gathering then, sending these hats on their way with a blessing and prayer for those babies receiving hats.  Each year across the world, 1 million preterm babies die within their first 28 days.  Unable to regulate their temperatures, these babies are vulnerable to hypothermia and ultimately death.  Tiny hats are simple solutions to this problem and have been proven to save babies lives. These hats will be delivered to babies in some of the most vulnerable parts of Africa with the highest pre-term mortality rates-Kenya, Rwanda and Uganda. Patterns are available but any baby hat with a circumference of 8 ½-11 inches is fine.


Additional Stitches of Hope Projects

Baby Quilts/Blankets – These may be crocheted, knitted or sewed. Items to be donated to Women’s Choice Network, a local crisis pregnancy center. Any pattern/design is appreciated.  Knotted Blankets are also made which are provided to refugees arriving in the Pittsburgh area and/or other programs as requested.

Balaclavas (ski masks) – These may be knitted, crocheted or sewed. Balaclavas will be sent to Lutheran Advocacy for Maritime Ministries or Citizen SAM (our military if made with wool yarn).

Baby Diaper Bags – Sew these diaper bags for Global Links, a medical relief and development organization dedicating to improving health conditions and environmental stewardship in developing countries. These diaper bags are presently being sent to Haiti.

Chemotherapy Hats/Scarves – These hats and scarves may be knitted, crochetted or sewn.  Any pattern/design is appreciated.  Store-purchased scraves are also OK.

Friendship Bracelets – A variety of patterns are available and again if you have a pattern you already use, that is fine.  These bracelets are distributed with some of our in-gatherings as a tangible reminder to let individuals know we are praying and thinking of them.

Leprosy Bandages – These bandages are knitted or crocheted and distributed to refugees within Vietnam through The D.O.V.E. Fund.

“Pillowcase Dresses”/T-Shirt Dresses – These dresses are provided to Little Dresses for Africa and other programs.  Patterns are provided or use a simple sundress pattern.  All children sizes OK.    Also shorts made out of T-shirts or a simple short pattern are distributed to Little Britches for Boys.

Winter accessories – These are provided to a variety of programs within the area and throughout the states.  Any pattern and sizes are OK as they are provided for children through adults.

Team Hope


Team Hope are opportunities to serve within our communities.

Operation Christmas Child Drop-Off Week – November 18-25. Volunteers needed for shifts to receive donated shoebox gifts. Children may participate in this activity. Please see specific newsletter article for additional details.

Feeding the Spirit-We will be going back on Thursday, December 12 and are looking for volunteers.  We will travel to Otterbein United Methodist Church, Greensburg to assist with serving meals. We will leave Zion’s parking lot at 4:30 PM.

If you plan to go directly to Otterbein, meet us in the Otterbein parking lot. This ministry provides meals each Thursday for individuals and families trying to make ends meet within our communities.  It’s a time of food and fellowship.  In 2018 they served 4,218 meals to our neighbors in the Greensburg community.  Sign-up sheets are in the narthex.

Assisting with Feeding the Spirit is now a regularly scheduled Team Hope activity on the second Thursday of every other month.  Please contact Gwen with any questions.

















Alternative Gift Ideas


TRYING TO FIND SOMETHING FOR THE PERSON WHO HAS EVERYTHING?…WANT TO GIVE A GIFT THAT MAKES A DIFFERENCE?…HAS GIFT-GIVING LOST ITS MEANING? If you answered yes to any of these then Alternative Gifts is the answer you are looking for. Through alternative gifts you are able to empower a family, a community, or one individual by giving a monetary donation in honor of or in memory of someone.  You choose what the donation is used towards- maybe you will by a pig for a family in a developing country, immunizations to prevent diseases, Bibles, provide education, or shelter. Gift suggestions begin at $4.00.  Alternative gifts are not just for holiday giving but may be given for birthdays, anniversaries, as memorials, or just because you want to make a difference.  Below is a listing of several organizations who offer alternative gifts.  Paper versions of some of their gift catalogs are available in the church narthex.

Church World Service Best Gift

Compassion International

ELCA Good Gifts

Heifer International

Lutheran World Relief Gift

Samaritan’s Purse

World Vision Gift


[Read more…]

Prayer Ministry


We remember those serving our country through Yellow Prayer Ribbons both here at home and abroad.  Congregation members are invited on Sundays to pick up a Prayer Ribbon in the narthex and during the service lift up prayers for the individual listed on the ribbon.  After the service return the ribbon back to the basket in the narthex.  To update our ribbons or add a name, please complete the from in the prayer basket located in both congregations and place it in the offering plate or give to Gwen.  These ribbons will be given to the service personnel upon completion of duty.