SAM ADAMS ELEMENTARY SCHOOL BACKPACK PROGRAM
One of our church’s missions is providing weekend meals to needy Sam Adams elementary students. Since 2016, CUMC, together with four other local churches and a not for profit organization have been providing six meals each school weekend to students identified by school administrators as needy. We shop, pack and deliver food to the school each Friday morning which the students take home at the end of the day.
Funding for these meals is provided, in part, through grants from companies such as Midwest Energy Corporation and Bayer International. Additionally, very generous community donations, including funding from Cass County 100 Women who Care, have kept this program alive and growing. The number of students served has grown from 20 in 2016 to 49 in January of 2019. Over 4000 meals have been provided since it’s inception thanks to the hard work of volunteers and the amazing support of our community.
Shown are Barb Strlekar, Nancy Smith, Barb Mesko, and Gretchen Kelley packing backpacks with nutritious food to take home to eat on weekends. This year our church is participating by packing 55 backpacks for two months of the school year.
Dances for our Abled Friends
Twice a year what used to be a monthly gathering for a free dinner has become a dance and dinner for the area LADD homes, Special Olympics athletes, and all of our friends from the special needs community. We make room in the Wood fellowship hall for a dance floor, make a nice dinner and desserts, decorate for a party, and bring in a DJ! Then we watch the fun begin, and see the joy on our friend’s faces, as well as ours. Dates and times are announced throughout the community through LADD homes, Lewis Cass Intermediate School District, Woodlands Behavioral Health, and local businesses.
Gathering two or three times a year, the Sewing Sowers make pillowcases for children and adults. The greatest number of cases, 60, has been given to students at Sam Adams Elementary School (the same children who receive weekend food packets). In 2018, several pillowcases were included in the Operation Christmas Child boxes and others were given to CUMC adults and friends who were experiencing health problems. The sewers are also beginning to make flannel blankets for infants.
Each fall we put up our MITTEN TREE to collect mittens, gloves
OPERATION CHRISTMAS CHILD (SAMARITAN’S PURSE)
Operation Christmas Child is a Christian outreach program sponsored by Samaritan’s Purse. Each year, thousands of churches and service organizations who participate in this program pack millions of shoe boxes with small gifts and personal items for children ages 2 to 14. These boxes are collected at local centers and shipped around the world to children in need. In addition to receiving a shoebox, each child hears about the message of Christ’s love and has an opportunity to receive a Bible in their native language.
The Cassopolis United Methodist Church has been involved in the Operation Christmas Child Program for many years. Karen Wright has headed the collection program for about five years. Church members usually donate 30 to 40 filled shoeboxes each year, along with generous donations for shipping and material costs of the program. Our local collection center is the Penn Friends Church, located between Cassopolis and Vandalia.
The congregation addresses local needs and adopts families at Thanksgiving and Christmas, providing food for all and gifts for the children.
We support our non-profit organizations serving our diverse community. These include:
- Helping Hands of Cass County in Cassopolis
- Sexual & Domestic Abuse Shelter in Three Rivers
- Special Olympics of Cass County