The Challenge:

In November of 2006, Mission Central began to search for a way to enable persons from the more distant regions of our Conference to be able to participate in the kind of volunteer and service activities experienced in Mechanicsburg, without having to travel so far. Mission Central had to find a way to help our volunteers help us continue to “Connect God’s Resources with Human Need”.

The Solution:

HUBs were created in February of 2007. A HUB would be a smaller version of Mission Central that was directed and managed by people feeling called to expand our outreach. An initial vision of an 8-site HUB system has grown into a multi-state network with new facilities being added all the time!

Why are they called HUBs?

After careful consideration of many options, it was decided that the image of a HUB (think of Mission Central as the center or the main gear in a network of interconnected gears that turn separately, but still in concert with one another) best illustrated our vision.

Does “HUB” stand for anything in particular?

Some of our HUBs have been very creative in coming up with an acronym, including:

H = Hands and Hearts, U = United and Unlimited, B = Bringing Blessings

H = Hearts and Hope, U = Uniform and Unique, B = Birth of more centers, volunteers and projects

Each HUB may come up with ideas of their own!

Why does a church or organization become a HUB and how do they do so?

Hands on volunteer ministry, as experienced in the story of the ministry of Mission Central, is a powerful means to understand and fulfill the directives of Jesus.

Those interested, are seeing the possibilities for service that they can create by being affiliated with Mission Central, which has the capacity to facilitate the “how to” of their service and can act as the receiving and distribution center for the results of their labors.

Our HUBs also share our vision that hands on mission can be the most powerful tool for sharing the Gospel by illustrating who we are called to be and by living out our faith in ways that are visible to others. Each HUB agrees to be ecumenical in its outreach and volunteer recruitment, agrees to work with persons of all ages and backgrounds and agrees to make local mission a first priority in their collection and distribution of materials.

Those interested in becoming a HUB can click the following links for more information:

What goes on at a HUB?

Each HUB is free and encouraged to determine the scope of its individual ministry, based on the facility space they have, the number of volunteers available and the interests and service focus that is most important to that HUB location

  • Most HUBs collect and assemble UMCOR Kits that are used for response to disaster and in support of mission work, locally, nationally and internationally
  • HUBs have volunteer work hours where people can come individually or in groups to complete the hands-on work that is needed
  • HUBs may seek out volunteers of all ages…from schools, senior centers, other churches, etc. and train them accordingly. This includes the collecting, sorting, packing and distribution of aid materials
  • Some HUBs collect items and materials used at Mission Central (for example: household items, toys, educational items – whatever is needed at the time) and facilitate shipping them to Mission Central for inclusion into larger shipments for use outside of the HUB’s immediate area
  • HUBs learn what is happening locally in their area and seek to find out how they can help fulfill basic human needs…many times in support of other ministries and outreach projects in their area
  • HUBs may also serve as a holding center for emergency relief supplies used for immediate distribution during times of natural disaster. At those times, HUBs will also act as receiving points for shipment from Mission Central for use in the HUB’s immediate area
  • Every HUB shares the common value of fellowship, service to God and service to others as their primary focus. How God calls each location to fulfill this focus is an exciting part of being a HUB!

What is Mission Central’s future vision for the HUB project?

Our vision is to have HUBs located within our own Susquehanna Conference at strategic places in order to most efficiently provide service and collection opportunities. We further envision the establishment of HUBs throughout the North East Jurisdiction of the United Methodist Church, covering the New England states, New York, New Jersey, Ohio, West Virginia and Washington, D.C.

Within these areas, we also envision HUBs being established by other denominational and non-denominational groups.