Project Out in the Cold
The weekend of November 8-10 marked our second annual Project Out in the Cold. This year, in addition to teens sleeping out in cardboard boxes to bring awareness to homelessness in our community, our teens also participated in a number of service projects that benefited those in need. Friday night, 24 junior and senior high teens gathered to build shelters and hear from representatives from The Open Door Mission and First Genesis’ “Straight From the Heart” ministry. Students heard about the causes and difficulties of homelessness, as well as practical ways to help. By soliciting sponsors, the students raised $1,300, that was given to support these two ministries, in addition they brought food donations for the Pearce Food Cupboard. Saturday, groups went to make peanut butter and jelly sandwiches at the Open Door Mission and to First Genesis to serve a community meal and read to children. The weekend ended with a group going back to the Open Door Mission to serve a Sunday evening meal and share in devotions. Out in the Cold continues to be an excellent vehicle for introducing our kids to the issues that face our community and giving them practical ways to demonstrate God’s value and love for all. Thanks for your support of our teens in this endeavor.
Fall Fun at Chili Commons
Each month this school year, Pearce teens have committed to doing at least one night of ministry at Chili Commons. September saw a fantastic kick ball game. In October, we held a “Fall Fun Night.” The evening included a costume contest, various games for kids, and lots and lots of candy to give away. Our teens did a fantastic job setting up games, interacting with the 30 children that came, and showing love to the folks in our community. Each month, we hear more and more positive feedback from both the residents and the management of Chili Commons. I am so proud of how our teens have taken on the role of missionaries right here at home. Be watching for upcoming events which will include Santa coming to the Commons, a living nativity, and after-school tutoring. Pat our students on the back, they are expanding the kingdom of God.
Junior Teen Bon-Fire
Since January, Jackie and I have been working with the Pearce Junior Teens. Our team, including Rob Hoose, Maurice Hopkins, Craig Bailey, Aaron Curtis and Alexis Bauer, has been blessed and challenged by the energy and excitement of this group. Each week, we attempt to provide a safe place, where all 7th & 8th grade teens can come and know that they will be loved and accepted. We also recognize the fact that they sit in school all day and, as many of you know, God did not design junior teens to sit that long! We try to provide activities and games that will allow them to have fun and use some of their energy. This semester, we have been focusing our devotion times on “walking in the shoes of others.” We want kids to identify with their feelings, develop empathy for others, and learn how to love others the way that God loves us. Eventually, we will begin to introduce them to service and various mission concepts. On October 30, we enjoyed an evening of capture the flag and a huge bon-fire at the Heek’s residence. Never in my wildest dreams did I picture myself working with this age group, much less enjoying it; but God has taught me so much and has blessed me beyond belief with this group!
Leader of the Month
As you know, I try to highlight a volunteer leader each month. Our leaders give so much of their time and energy each week that I want to make sure you get to know each of them. Honna Lusk is known to most of you as Pearce Church’s Administrator, but to our senior teens she is so much more. Honna is available for our teens girls almost 24 hours a day. She is frequently seen texting, making goofy videos with her girls, or at Jitter’s in deep conversation. Honna has been volunteering with Pearce for three years and brings a wealth of life experiences that help her relate well with our teens. She traveled last year to Poland on our student mission trip and this past August she led a group to Algonquin. Honna’s love for Christ and passion for hurting kids is visible in everything she does. If you see Honna this month, thank her for her service and feel free to mention her beautiful tutu.