The Christmas Store is Back!
Does it feel good to give gifts to your children that you purchased? ”Our house just burned down two days ago.” Said a grandfather who had just purchased a number of toys from the Christmas Store. “We lost everything in the fire and we didn’t know where we were going to get gifts for our family. This is so nice of you all to do this.” We were all standing there with our hearts in our throats and our mouths open, exhaling audible gasps. This grandfather’s expression of gratitude is reflective of the dignity that emerges as a result of the gifts that many of you have given to the Christmas Store.
Christmas reminds us of how God, in Christ, came down and joined us in our struggle. His life gave us honor and dignity. Jesus becoming one of us reminded us that we are made in the image of God. When you give a gift to the Christmas Store you are reminding others that they have value and worth.
This is now the third year of the Store’s operation and it is coming at a time when more people are earning and living on less. Grace For Dover is once again looking to generous givers like you to help give more grandparents, widows, widowers and single parents the dignity of purchasing toys at greatly discounted and affordable prices. We are collecting new toys and accepting monetary gifts for purchasing toys. The Christmas store opens December 7 from 9:30-1:00 pm. We will collect toys right up to the time the store opens.
If you want to help, purchase toys between $1 & 25.00 and bring them to 350 McKee Rd. Dover, DE 19904 or make a donation on the website via Paypal and designate it for the Christmas Store. Or send a check made out to Grace For Dover and write in the memo line “Christmas Store”. What you give is more than just a gift, you are giving a dignifying lift!
A Member Congregation of the PCA
350 McKee RD
Dover, DE 19904
Tyler Hogan had the privilege of delivering the message at Grace Presbyterian Church on 4/7. In it, he shares the mission and vision of our ministry, and gives a brief overview of our programs and how you can get involved. 30 minutes.
Click here to download the mp3.
Faith & Finances is a series of eleven sessions on financial literacy for low-‐income or financially vulnerable adults. Each 90-minute session is designed to meet the learning needs of those who struggle to manage their money. Through group discussions, participants gain important information and skills relevant to their everyday lives.
Our first class will begin with orientation on May 14th at 6:30 pm. Classes will continue on Tuesday nights from May 21st until graduation on August 6th. Contact us if you’d like to reserve a spot. Books are $10, and dinner is usually provided. Download the F&F Class Brochure.
We’re also in need of allies and facilitators. Orientation will be Tuesday, April 30th at 7:00. Contact us to volunteer!
What’s so terrible about being two years old? It is a time for the baby to walk, talk, ask a lot of questions and show you what he or she can do. Two-year-olds are a bundle of energy and curiosity wrapped in soft skin and wearing an irresistible grin. Every parent looks at their new-to-the world child, not for what they have done, but for what they will become. And so loving parents seek to understand their toddler in order to prepare the baby for the future.
Grace For Dover is approaching two-years old and we’ve had quite the experience of learning to walk and talk as we seek the peace of the city. So like most two years old we want to tell you what we’ve done. (I hope that you are patient with us, like most adults are with toddlers’!)
The year began with the news from the IRS approving our application as a non-profit organization. Full of hope that we would be approved, we had already begun our 5th Jobs For Life class and an ESL class in February. Both classes ended in May with great success.
Not one for resting though, like most toddlers, we had set out to raise to funds through Chick-Fil-A, Applebee’s and our first fundraiser breakfast brunch, introducing Grace for Dover to the community. There were three consecutive months of fundraisers that raised about $4,000 and some monthly pledges as well.
(Jobs For Life Students and Champions)
Now it is not as if the first eight months of the year weren’t moving fast enough, we also began to flex our muscles a bit with Wellspring, Capernaum and Faith and Finances. Wellspring began with sport physicals in August and flu shots in October. Faith and Finances began with an orientation and informational meeting, gathering volunteers to teach people how to handle their money after they finish Jobs For Life and find employment.
In September we began classes with ESL and Jobs For Life. Capernaum, the outreach to families with children with disabilities had its first respite night in October. November graduated 8 students from Jobs For Life and ESL closed out with a celebration. Wellspring received some valuable and affirming information from Lavida Owens-White, a nationally known parish nursing/faith-based community health expert, on different models of community health.
(Wellspring Sports Physicals)
We finished the year gathering toys and gifts for the Christmas Store that opened the first weekend of December. We had more gifts than the previous year and everything sold. Also Capernaum held its second respite night. Now that isn’t so terrible, is it?
One last thing about being two-years-old, you can’t live on your own. You need the loving care and provision of mom and dad. Grace For Dover is not able to carry out its mission without all of you who gave gifts and or pledged your monthly support for this young work. Thank you!
If you would like to support Grace For Dover, so that we can continue to grow, you can do so with a monthly gift of any amount. Make your check out to “Grace For Dover” and mail it to P.O. Box 862 Dover, DE 19903 or you could visit our website at www.gracefordover.org and donate via Paypal.
Please pray for Grace for Dover as well. Some things you can pray for:
- Funding for the programs and administration of Grace For Dover.
- Jobs For Life class #7 participants and their success in the program.
- Faith and Finances training in February. Pray for the volunteers and the travel for those who are going through the training.
- Wellspring and the monthly emphasis on wellness and health for God’s glory.
- Capernaum having its first respite night of 2013.
- Our Transitional housing program to find a suitable location and sufficient funding to sustain the ministry.
Seeking the peace of the city together,
Shopping With Dignity”What do I have to bring…I am a single mother. Do I need to bring my state…? “No, you don’t have to prove anything. The store’s access is strictly on your honor.”
This was a typical conversation I had with several inquirers about the Christmas Store. These people, made in the image of God, were used to having to prove that they are at a certain income level and thereby qualified to take advantage of what the Christmas Store offered.
Poverty has a way of making someone feel trapped and feeling that certain things are out of their reach. So Grace For Dover, as it seeks to bring peace to the city, has as one of its mandates, giving dignity to men and women made in the image of God. Being able to give a gift to your child or grandchild that you purchased is both gratifying and dignifying as well as affirming them in their humanity.
When you can give a gift that comes from your own hand it gives you pleasure. Gifts that are given in your name, like many toy drives seek to do, have the focus on the giver and the child receiving the gift and that is fine. However, the parent is left feeling diminished and insufficient.
Remembering that God has made us workers, like himself, and has given us the ability to enjoy the fruit of our labors, like he does, the ability to give your loved one a gift that you purchased is to shop with dignity. Not requiring someone to “prove” their economic status can be ennobling and in a small way, helping them not to feel further stigmatized in their poverty.
Grace For Dover’s Christmas Store was open last weekend, Friday evening for 2 hours and then on Saturday for 5 hours. New relationships were formed and the Gospel was shared. Shoppers were pleased with their purchases and the store raised about $1650.00.
Grace For Dover is not looking to make money, as the gifts that were donated probably totaled more than 7000.00 dollars, but we are seeking the peace of the city. And for that there is no price tag.
If you would like to donate for next year’s Christmas store you can do so by donating through Paypal on the website and leave a reply stating you would like this gift to go to the Christmas Store. Also, you can mail a donation to Grace For Dover PO box 862 Dover, DE 19903 and indicate that it is for the Christmas Store.
Thank you for your prayers, gifts and service during the Christmas store. Shalom!
The Christmas Store Is Back!
Grace For Dover is beginning to collect toys for the Christmas Store. The Christmas Store is for people who struggle to provide Christmas gifts for their families. It is a way for them to maintain dignity in purchasing new things for their loved ones at a deeply discounted price. We began collecting new items to stock the Christmas Store in July.
We will accept toy donations right up to the first day of the store. The Christmas Store will open for business on December 7th and 8th. Toy donations can be dropped of at the Grace Church office at 350 McKee Rd Dover, DE. 19904.
Tax-deductible monetary gifts for the Christmas Store can be mailed to “Grace For Dover” @ P.O. Box 862 Dover, DE, 19903. You can also make a donation on the website www.gracefordover.org via Paypal.
For more info contact Kenny Foster@ 302-319-4433. Thank you for helping bring Grace To Dover!
With the recent release of August’s jobs report, more than 360,000 people have dropped out of the work force. What are some of the reasons? Discouraged? Lack of focus? Unidentified roadblocks? The collapse of community? Jobs For Life can help!
Class # 6 gets underway Tuesday, September 11, 2012. The start time is 6:30. We meet at Grace Church located at 350 McKee Rd Dover, DE 19904. Get back to the workforce and feeling good about yourself. Call us at 302-319-4433.
At Jobs For life we build lives one jobs at a time.
When you think about seeking the peace of the city then you must learn to deal with the issue of God’s sovereignty and man’s sin. Injustice and the violation of peace exist because of man’s sin. And doing social justice and seeking peace are things we learn from watching a Sovereign God deal with man’s sin. We get a glimpse of this mystery in the paradoxical phrase from the book of Roman’s where Paul writes that God is both, “just and the one who justifies those who have faith in Jesus.” John Piper does a good job of outlining this in the following article. Enjoy and be at peace!
John Piper on Man’s Sin and God’s Sovereignty
Does God merely watch a sin taking place in the world and then “use” that for good, or are even the worst of sins predestined and designed by Him? In a weekend seminar,
Seeking the peace of the city,
Grace For Dover
P.O. Box 862
There are a lot of firsts that are worth remembering in ones live. Like your first word, or your first step, your first day of school, or buying your first car. Every “first” is infused with hope. And it is no different when it comes to seeking the peace of the city. Grace For Dover had its first banquet last Saturday and the response of those that attended was affirming of the hope we have for the city’s peace.
We are grateful to Grace Church (PCA) for letting us transform their all purpose room into a dining facility. Our banquet was a breakfast brunch with food prepared by BJ Reames. The young people of the ministry, “Louder Than Words” with Dave and Sue Brown, served our guests with coffee, juice and water. They helped in keeping the food replenished as well as cleaning up afterward.
Our guests were from all over the city of Dover and other parts of the state of Delaware. They were other churches represented as well.
Several of the volunteers made presentations about the different services and Rev. John Moore was our speaker. We had over 60 guests and we raised a little over 3800.00 with some monthly support pledged as well.
I am thankful for the team of volunteers who have labored to see the banquet come about. We will not share in this moment again. It was indeed a first! Thank you to Georgia and Harry VanSant, Tyler Hogan, Terri and Bob English, Lisa Williams, Bob Hogan, and Rich Laura Henry and Janet Berry. I am blessed to work with such wonderful saints of God! May the memory of Grace For Dover’s first banquet be a reminder of a work of shalom in our city.
Seeking The Peace Of The City,