Trinity “kicked off” the fall in service to others. We came together over multiple weeks during the frenzy of back-to-school season to serve our city and care for our community.
Our serving began all the way back at Vacation Bible School in July, as our kids collected school supplies to share with students at Oak Grove Belemede. Our VBS students collected 598 regular glue sticks, 14 large glue sticks, 148 wide ruled composition books, 44 college ruled composition books, 18 wide ruled spiral notebooks, 11 college ruled spiral notebooks, 9 packages of notebook paper, 4 grid composition books, 1 box of colored pencils, and one box of #2 pencils.
In addition to the supplies given by our children, we also put up our Oak Grove Apple Tree this year and every single apple was taken. These bags upon bags of donations were given to the teachers at Oak Grove Belemede as they began their back-to-school preparations.
While collecting for those teacher wish lists, we also took on a new project this year, and began to collect new shoes in order to help with the New Shoes for Back to School Ministry in partnership with Third Street Bethel A.M.E. Church. Labor Day weekend volunteers from Trinity joined others from around the area to distribute shoes to students from our city.
We then turned quickly from glue sticks and shoes to food and spent weeks gathering food for our friends at the Sherbourne food pantry. This Sherbourne “Blitz” filled our collection boxes and overflowed into our hallways leading up to our Reach Out RVA 2.0 weekend.
This event, begun in 2017, allows congregation members to fan out into our community and serve with many local partners. On Friday, September 7, we sent two teams out–one to Sherbourne UMC’s food bank and one to Feed More. We delivered 170 bags of groceries to Sherbourne, and our team at Feed More prepared 1,080 boxes of food for elderly shut-ins.
The forecasted rainstorms for Saturday and Sunday mostly held off, leaving our outdoor work teams with proper working conditions. Together we cleaned up at the James River, East End Cemetery, Oak Grove, Community Food Collaborative, and the CrossOver Clinic; served at the Doorways and the Habitat ReStore and did landscaping for a Habitat home.
In total we had 182 people sign up for Reach Out RVA 2.0, giving of their time on a busy fall weekend to bless our community.
Sunday afternoon our celebratory meal of fried chicken, coleslaw, potato salad, baked beans, and rolls hit the spot. The signature desserts brought in were a hit too, but the surprise of the afternoon turned out to be a dunking booth. Somehow, Pastor Larry, Associate Pastor Drew Willson, Youth Director Bryce Miller, and perhaps Trinity’s number one advocate, Shaw Blackmon, were coaxed into being the targets for the dunking booth.
Bryce wore a wet suit, Shaw a basketball uniform while sporting a bold yellow curly wig, Pastor Larry wore a traditional baptism robe wrapped in a bright orange life preserver, and Drew wore his bathing suit accompanied with an umbrella. By the time our strong armed Trinity members were finished tossing at the target, no part of Larry, Drew, Bryce, or Shaw were dry!!
We thank you for your participation in making Reach Out RVA 2.0 a success. With your help, people outside the walls of Trinity were impacted, and that’s just what we hoped would happen.
If you are willing, we would appreciate your thoughts about the weekend. Follow the link below, and let us know what worked, what didn’t work for you. Offer FeedbackOffer Feedback
As we move firmly into fall, we hope that all who participated will reflect back on our Reach Out RVA 2.0 theme from Galatians 6:9: “Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time, we will reap a harvest if we do not give up” and continue to seek ways to serve our city!
Trinity In Action
Check out these photos from our fall service projects and Reach Out RVA.
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