Monthly Project Hope


FYI  PLEASE NOTE —  We are no longer collecting the card fronts off the greeting and Christmas cards. Both St. Jude’s Children’s Ranch and the Latin American Lutheran Mission have discontinued their activities which they had utilized these card fronts.



Join us for a time of fellowship at Helping Hands Tuesdays, July 17th and August 21st at 10 am and 6:30 pm as we prepare our on-going and special mission projects. These monthly events are open to all ages and provide an opportunity for children, youth, and adults to participate together. Please contact Gwen with any questions or suggestions for upcoming activities.



The Westmoreland County Operation Christmas Child will have Spirit nights at the Chick-fil-a at the Greengate Centre, Greensburg. A portion of your purchase those days will be donated to help share the Good News and ship the box to a child receiving a box from our September packing party and ingathering. Simply share this announcement in the newsletter or church bulletin OR mention Operation Christmas Child when placing your order. The dates are Thursdays, July 5, August 2, September 6 and October 4 between the hours of 6:30am to 10:00 pm. Thank you!



During the month of July our PROJECT HOPE is paper products for Blackburn Center and Feeding the Spirit. The Blackburn Center is our area’s women’s shelter for those who are experiencing domestic abuse. The Blackburn Center provides temporary housing for the women and their children in addition to counseling and other supportive services. Feeding the Spirit is a ministry out of Otterbein United Methodist Church that provides a meal on Thursday evening, fellowship and referral services to families and individuals within the Greensburg area. Last year over 4,000 meals were served. We are collecting napkins, paper towels, toilet paper and tissues.


For the month of AUGUST our PROJECT HOPE is school supplies for “Education for Children & Youth Experiencing Homelessness,” which serves children in Westmoreland County and neighboring counties. We are collecting new school supplies, i.e. Pencils, markers, crayons, scissors, back packs, paper and tablets….We are again partnering with the Jeannette School District in providing school uniforms for children and youth experiencing homelessness or need. We are looking for the following: BOYS: Tops: Blue (powder, navy and royal BLUE) Red (true Red) or White solid collared shirts (polos, dress shirts or turtle necks-OK)-long or short sleeves. Solid sweater (in above colors) over appropriate collared shirt are OK. No manufacturer logos.   Dress Pants & Shorts: Khaki, Navy Blue or Black dress pants or shorts. Socks: Blue, Black, Brown, Red or White. Belts (optional): Brown or Black.

GIRLS: Tops: Blue (powder, navy and royal BLUE), Red (true Red) or White solid collared shirts (polos, dress shirts or turtle necks-OK)-long or short sleeves. Solid sweater (in above colors) over appropriate collared shirt are OK. No manufacturer logos. Dress Pants, Shorts, Capris, Skorts or Jumpers: Khaki, Navy blue or Black. Socks: Blue, Black, Brown, Red or White, including tights and natural colored pantyhose. Belts (optional): Brown or Black.

All items should be received by Sunday, August 19th.



Project Hope Touching Lives

During the second quarter of 2018 (April-June) Through ingatherings and donations we reached out to individuals and families served by the following 31 agencies: Alliance for Infants & Toddlers, The Amani Puppets, Angels in the Attic, Bethesda Children’s Home (Right Start), Birthright of Greensburg, Blackburn Center, Blessed Bundles, A Child’s Place at Mercy (Westmoreland), Christian Laymen’s Corp., Christian Literacy Associates, Foster Love Project, Glade Run Horticulture Therapy Program, Goodwill Outreach, Jeremiah’s Place, Life Way Pregnancy Center, Light of Life, Lion’s International Vision Initiative, MAYA, Military Families Coupon Outreach, Newborns in Need, Operation Christmas Child, Project Linus, Samaritan’s Purse, St. Barbaras Food Pantry, The Early Learning Institute, Welcome Home Shelter, Wesley Family Services, Women’s Choice Network, YWAm (Youth With a Mission), YWCA(Greensburg) Literacy Project and 412 Youth Zone.

I am reminded of a quote from Teresa of Avila as she spoke about being the body of Christ.

“Christ has no body now but yours. No hands, no feet on earth but yours. Yours are the eyes through which he looks compassion on this world. Yours are the feet with which he walks to do good. Yours are the hands through which he blesses all the world. Yours are the hands, yours are the feet, yours are the eyes, you are his body. Christ has no body now on earth but yours.”-Teresa of Avila



We didn’t want the men to feel left out in our various in gatherings. So, we are partnering with The Men’s Wearhouse in their Annual Clothing Drive. We will be collecting gently used professional attire—suits or suit coat, slacks, button-down shirts and ties. These clothing donations will be given to men job training programs or in need of interview and business clothing to re-enter or start the workforce. Clothes will be distributed both locally and nationally. Last year 322,714 items of clothes were distributed.   Whether it’s a pair of pants that is too short or a suit that no longer fits now is the time to take it out of your closet. The clothing needs to be dropped off by Sunday, July 29th to Penn, Zion’s or Brush Creek.











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. Our sewing projects are Smile Bags for Operation Smile. Some of you may be familiar with this organization as we have sewn dolls and hospital gowns for them, as well as several Thrivent Action Teams. Operation Smile provides life-saving cleft surgeries to children in third world and developing countries. These bags are provided to the children receiving the cleft palate/lip surgeries and are filled with personal hygiene/dental care items and activities for the child as he/she recovers.

If you have a pattern or project to share, please notify Gwen as we discover ways to share through our homemade gifts of hope. Thank You to all who share your hand of creativity and to those who are spreading the word and inviting others to join in spreading homemade gifts of hope!


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.

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.



Team Hope



Team Hope provides an opportunity to go out into our communities and be involved in a service activity together.

We have again been designated as the donation recipient for the Just Between Friends sale at the Monroeville Convention Center. Last Fall we were able to reach out to 34 agencies and the families/individuals they serve through this event, distributing children’s clothes, toys and related items. More details will be coming in the bulletins as to when we need to pick up the items at the Monroeville Convention Center and some extra sorting days.














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


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