by Glenda Andrews, Jubilee House Coordinator
These are the words the Jubilee House volunteers recently heard while at your Grace Episcopal Jubilee House.
There has been news lately about Safe Harbor and the Safe Harbor volunteers staying open for extended hours during our cold spring. This permanent facility has been a blessing for our city and the vulnerable community it serves by providing a shelter at night, which protects people from the harsh cold Northern Michigan winter. With our usual Grace, the people of Grace Church have given of themselves to this community outreach by volunteering many hours with their hearts and arms wide open to those in need. I would expect no less from Grace Episcopal!!! It is what we do.
With that said, Safe Harbor has come and gone for the year but the ministry of Jubilee House continues on 5 days a week, 52 weeks a year. Jubilee House volunteers give of their time, hearts, and talents each and every one of those days, serving a community that still has many daily needs even when it is warm. I have been asked many times “how does this new Safe Harbor shelter affect the operation of Jubilee House?” My reply is “Jubilee House continues to do what it has always done for twelve years, serving and loving God’s people”. This ministry is providing the daily needs for those who are in need through showers, laundry, clothing, food, but most of all Christian love and prayer. The Gospel tells us to feed the hungry, clothe the naked, love one another; this is what Jubilee House does year around. Jubilee House is a Grace Church ministry. Our clergy volunteers and people at Jubilee House can and do have daily prayers together on the deck of Jubilee House. A prayer pole has been set with prayer ribbons tied on by people who have asked a volunteer to pray with them. There is a Jubilee House Cross with 46 names on it of God’s people who have died and memorials given for them. At Jubilee House there have been marriage celebrations, death memorials, birthdays, or just a warm hug and smile to those who come through our door. This is God’s ministry that not only serves the physical needs but also the spiritual needs as well.
Today across the nation, the established churches must and are changing. The church is going out to the people not waiting for the people to come to the church. God’s love is so needed “out there”. This is what Christ did, He went to the people. This is God’s command to us.
Your Grace Jubilee Ministries, that you support, need your physical help. Jubilee House has 50 to 65 people A DAY come to Jubilee House, that is over 300 visits a week 15,600 visits a year. Your Grace Jubilee Food Pantry has much the same twice a week, and the Grace Jubilee Community Meal has those numbers each Friday. The volunteers for these ministries come from the community at large as well as our Grace family. All of these ministries need more helping hands. The numbers of people using the Jubilee ministries have increased by over 20% over this last year but the number of volunteers have not. It is by the devotion of the current volunteers that keep these ministries strong. Your Grace Jubilee Ministries are asking for your help. Let us go to the people through these ministries to love and serve the Lord. Let us go and do God’s work. Won’t you please consider volunteering your time?
Grace Jubilee Ministries Statement of Purpose
The Grace Episcopal Jubilee Ministry’s purpose is to serve as an outreach ministry to the marginalized, poor, hungry, unemployed, or oppressed people of our community. It is the ministries intent to promote dignity, respect, and support to those who are served by providing the essential daily living needs for health and faith. The Jubilee Ministries are rooted in the reality of God’s presence in each and every human being and that each person has value. These ministries are a direct and dynamic link between our theology and ethics that we proclaim as Christians, being the talk of our faith is the walk of our faith.