I don’t talk about my job very often, but I’m about to.
For the past 3 years, I’ve been the Youth & Creative Ministries director at The Salvation Army in North Portland. I work with kids from cradle to college. It’s 1/3 children’s/youth pastor and 2/3 child social worker. While I desperately care about their spiritual life – I want them to see Christ in me and in our church, and I want them to cling to the hope he offers them – there are more pressing issues at hand. Like food. and clothes that fit. and shoes that don’t have holes. first trips to Target.
4 days out of the week, I take a bus to a nearby trailer park and fill it with kids. I bring it back, and we (always, without exception) give them a meal and provide programs for them. Tuesdays we have scouting programs, Wednesday we have music programs, Thursdays we have Bible study and youth group for the older kids. Sundays we have Sunday School, church, Jr. Church and often they ask if there’s any reason I could have them stay after church. They now constantly ask me if they can wash windows, vacuum or sweep.
In the summer, we spend thousands of dollars making sure they can go to summer camp.
I love them so much.
You know those red kettles outside of the store, with the people standing there and ringing a bell? That’s for us. I mean, they don’t all go to North Portland, but it’s for The Salvation Army to provide services and home and hope to children all over the world.
On Saturday, I spent a few hours standing at a kettle, ringing a bell. Our kettles are down this year, and kettles are a HUGE part of our budget. Our budget is what keeps gas in the busses, helps us send to camp, and allows us to serve the needs of our community.
I decided to start an online kettle. All of the money donated to my online kettle goes to The Salvation Army’s work in North Portland – so it’s like you dropped money into the kettle when I stood there ringing on Saturday. Even $5 helps!
Please donate to my online red kettle here and please help me spread the word. My goal is $1,000 and I KNOW we can reach that! If you donate at least $5, I will give you free ad space on my blog for a month – just drop me a line or a comment and I’ll shoot you an e-mail with a code. 🙂
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