To Believe is to Care; to Care is to Do
Central Congregational Church is a church that strives to make a difference in the world. We see outreach as central to the life of the church. We believe in hands-on, face-to-face outreach, building relationships with those in need. We find these experiences often life-changing for all involved. We also have relationships with many community-based organizations that provide services for the homeless, hungry, children at risk, and those who are less fortunate in our community, our country and around the globe.
Social Action and Mission Committee (SAM)
Our Social Action and Missions Committee oversees much of our outreach. However, throughout the year various groups and individuals within the church carry out their own mission efforts. Each month, SAM focuses on a project, initiative or organization that is making a difference in the lives of others, contributing funds and much-needed supplies as well as raising awareness of their efforts within our church community. Focus projects support local, regional, national and global needs, through organizations like Habitat for Humanity, the Lowell Transitional Living Center, the Lowell Alternative House, and the Chelmsford’s “Secret Santa” program.
St. Paul’s Soup Kitchen
Throughout the year (on all months with a 5th Monday) CCC prepares and serves dinner for the hungry and homeless at St. Paul’s Kitchen at the Eliot Presbyterian Church in Lowell. Members make shepherd’s pies and desserts, and our crew prepares dinner for 100-150 guests in need of a hot meal in a safe, welcoming environment. St. Paul’s Kitchen is run entirely on a volunteer basis and serves more than 20,000 free meals every year.
Each year, members of Central Congregational Church travel to Down East Maine to help make homes warm, safe and dry for residents in need. We tackle challenging renovation projects, scrape and paint houses, build and repair porches and handicapped ramps, helping repair homes and lives. Our goal is to make God’s love visible to those we serve. It is a life-changing experience for both those serving as well as those being served.
On our Down East Maine Mission Trip (DEMM) we go to Washington County and join with a ministry called, “Neighbors in Need.” The DEMM trip is for teens and adults. Youth entering 8th grade and up are eligible, 7th graders and younger should talk with parents and Peter White for mission options with DEMM. We join with the Harvard UCC Congregational Church for this trip and stay at a church camp outside of Machias, Maine. Kids and adults enjoy renewing friendships, making new friends, getting to know the great residents we serve and other DEMM traditions such as star-gazing, campfires, visiting the West Quoddy Head Lighthouse and more! This trip is a 18 year tradition for our church and is always a terrific, meaningful time. Look for an informational meeting to be held in February or early March.
‘Make a Difference Sundays’
On “Make a Difference Sundays” we share a meal together after worship and then head out in work teams to serve our community. Past projects have included visiting local nursing homes, trail clean-up on the Freeman Rail Trail, making cards for homebound members, and working at Chelmsford’s Community Garden.
Prayer Shawl Ministry
Our Prayer Shawl Ministry makes soft, beautiful prayer shawls that we hand out to anyone who asks. These shawls are prayed over as they’re made and blessed during a service of worship. They’re also handed out to newborns at our baptism ceremonies and given to our graduates as they head off to college or out into the world.
Our Prayer Ministry is also a very vibrant part of our church. Each and every day we have a faith-filled, committed group of folks practicing intercessory prayer. Prayer requests may be sent to the church office, firstname.lastname@example.org and will be forwarded to the Prayer Ministry Coordinator, Wendy Perry.
These are some of the ways we strive to make a difference in our world. We never rest on our laurels however. Instead we strive to hear the voice of God calling us to new and exciting adventures in discipleship and service.