Recently, Pastors Arthur and Norma Jean Fellows of Culpeper UMC, led a group from Culpeper, VA to Mission Central for several days of volunteering. Pastor Arthur has been kind enough to share his thoughts on their time spent here:
16 members of the Culpeper UMC traveled by bus from Culpeper, VA to Mechanicsburg, PA to spend 2 days at Mission Central. After orientation, we were given volunteer badges and had a tour of the warehouse. The group was surprised and some overwhelmed, with all that happens in the facility.
We were divided into two groups, one worked at checking, verifying and repacking items for school kits. The other sorted “stuff” (Halloween items that had been donated), into different categories and then boxed, labeled and placed on pallets.
This trip proved to be one way our CUMC older adults are still able to participate in a mission experience after they feel they are unable to be a viable part of a week long VIM team.
What did our group learn and what did we learn about God’s plan?
Mission Central is bigger and more complex than had been thought. There are 5 different partners involved, UMCOR being the main one. Flood Buckets, Health Kits, School Kits, Birthing Layette and Sewing Kits are all part of UMCOR. There is also a computer salvage and rebuild program providing workable computers to the needy.
Scripture tells us that the poor will always be with us and Mission Central is taking what some don’t need and using it for those in need. Mission Central also receives the needed supplies to provide for the many that don’t have. Another example is mothers who are on food stamps and are working…their children are in child care, they have to have disposal diapers, yet food stamps can not be used for paper products, so disposable diapers are collected at Mission Central and given out to these mothers. Items that can not be used in a program are placed in their store and monies received from those items provide financial support for the building.
Our group came away with a great feeling of being the hands and feet of Jesus. We also are proof of the fact that the United Methodist Church is a connectional church and through UMCOR and Mission Central we live that connection for Jesus to be seen and felt by others.
Thank you to everyone from Culpeper UMC! We truly appreciate all that you have done and continue to do.