As I reflect on an exciting celebration we hosted in our sanctuary yesterday afternoon, the phrase "it takes a village" continues to take on new layers of meaning and importance in the life of the ministry we are called to be a part at FCC Tacoma.
The event was the graduation of the first class of a new job training program, of which 22 current and former residents of the Village on 6th and Orchard dedicated their time, trust, and commitment to completing. Sparked by a conversation between LIHI case manager, Latisha Bones and Tacoma Goodwill Manager of Community Engagement, Kelly Blucher, yesterday marked the completion of a multi-week, intensive course preparing students with new tools for career readiness, skills for setting and attaining life goals, and technology training.
As the story goes, the village is what made this happen, for it was possible thanks to the collaboration of several organizations in addition to the Low Income Housing Institute and Goodwill; Safe Streets, Workforce Central, Valeo Vocation, the Economic Security For All program, and FCC Tacoma - a team effort with grand implications for the future.
As you enjoy some photos from yesterday's event, I invite you to keep in your prayers these 22 individuals who have earned their certificates with hard work and determination, and for the exciting future ahead for each one of them and their families. May we continue to live into our call to say "yes" to new partnerships and ministerial opportunities in the future, leaning into a trust in the Spirit which weaves together many lives and stories for the building of Beloved Community.
It takes a village! Thanks be to God!
Among our community’s joys, we lift:
Prayers of thanksgiving and congratulations to the 22 graduates, all of whom are either current or former residents of the Village on 6th and Orchard, who completed a multi-week intensive job training program, a collaboration of several local partners including Goodwill and the Low Income Housing Institute.
Among our concerns,
We lift the family and loved ones of Carmon Watson, a volunteer with our ministry partners at B&G who died this week from complications due to COVID.
We add to our prayer concerns Jimmy Jinkerson, brother-in-law of Sandy King, who now continues at home from a series of medical challenges.
We continue to pray for:
Jan Ginter, a friend to many from the former Eastside Christian Church community
Daniel Davis, friend of Susan Pearson
Rachel Morford, daughter of Mary Morford
Kathie Call's son, Michael Call
For our homebound friends, Helen Bosley, Elaine Jonson, Harry and Margaret Lobberegt, Mereidene Moore, Jane Nelson, Verena Reese, and Jim and Kay Thompson
Among our local and global community prayer concerns:
We continue to pray for those in harm's way in Ukraine, and for peace to prevail in the midst of conflict and oppression as it rears its ugly head around the world. We pray also for those facing ongoing violence and oppression in nations around the world, including Yemen, Afghanistan, Palestine, Ethiopia, and Syria. Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayers.
For the Village on 6th and Orchard, for all who live there, have lived there, work, volunteer, and/or give in all kinds of other ways to support this important cause. We also pray for the courage to continue working and advocating for substantive change from the bottom up, so that all people are given the dignity and love in life that God so calls us provide for one another.
For Global Ministry partners in Indonesia, in particular, the Evangelical Christian Church of Timor (GMIT), with a remarkable mobilization of public education, diaconal care, and disaster relief. "The foundation for it all was a simple but powerful theological insight, born of the struggle and suffering these disasters caused: in such times, the mission of the church is to merawat kehidupan: to nurture life, to defend life."
Gracious and steadfast God,
We pray for all seeking healing and renewal,
hope for the brokenhearted,
rest for the weary,
strength for the struggling,
peace for the wandering,
compassion for the misunderstood,
love, divine, redemptive, transformative
LOVE, for all.
In Christ's name, may we be the vessels of such love.
With love and gratitude,