Sharing God’s blessings with all

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

When we share the blessings God has given us, powerful things happen! We honor Him and share in His work of provision and reconciliation.

St. Mark’s supports and partners with many other groups in service to our Lord and our community. Your gifts are important to these efforts and greatly appreciated. We offer below a list of such opportunities, including the monthly focus approved by St. Mark’s Council and a special 24-hour appeal for EDGE for Tomorrow that starts March 4.

St. Mark’s monthly giving targets include:

January – Family Promise
February – EDGE for Tomorrow (more details below)
April – Lutheran Volunteer Corp & Bowlathon
May – Kairos (prison ministry)
June – Sojourners’ Place/LCS Gimme Shelter Golf
July – LIFE (Lutherans Involved in Food Emergencies)
August – Youth Group
September – Lutheran Community Services & Walkathon
October – ELCA World Hunger
November – Hilltop Lutheran Neighborhood Center

To make a designated gift, you may:

  • Note the designation on your weekly church envelope in the “Special Appeal For:” section
  • Indicate your distribution in the memo on your check or include a note with your check.
  • If you give electronically, you may include a memo or notation to specify the designation.

In addition to these ministries, the Delaware-Maryland Synod, of which St. Mark’s is a part, is in the midst of its 2021 Lenten Appeal, which continues through April 5. Every dollar given will be matched during this time, up to $40,000. These gifts support the synod’s Ministry Fund, helping to build local ministries for the future.

About EDGE for Tomorrow and the DoMore24 campaign March 4-5

EDGE for Tomorrow is thrilled to participate in the monumental DoMore24 statewide campaign, 24 hours during which your gift has extra impact. The period runs from 6 p.m. March 4 to 6 p.m. March 5. This can have a great impact on EDGE’s ability to remain nimble and continue to meet the needs of the low-income children and families we serve in Edgemoor Gardens, Bellevue and Bellefonte during the most tumultuous year of our organization’s history.

Check out our campaign page by clicking here and set up a reminder to donate. Please help us all do more together. Thank you for your support!

EDGE for Tomorrow was founded in 2011 as an outreach ministry of
our neighbor, Presbyterian Church of the Covenant (PCOC). Primary funding comes from private foundations and government grants, along with individual donations and fund-raising events. EDGE provides after-school care, addresses food insecurity, and advocates and supports the marginalized in our community.EDGE for Tomorrow logo
Located in PCOC’s building at 503 Duncan Rd, EDGE After-School is for children in grades K through 5 who attend Mount Pleasant Elementary School, offering:
  • Virtues-based programming and Social Emotional Learning (SEL) that teaches good citizenship, social skills, empathy and kindness,
  • Tutoring and enrichment activities with specialized reading and math help,
  • Homework help, healthy snacks and physical activities, and
  • STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) learning to enrich skills needed for reading, math, geography, science and the arts.

COVID-19 forced us to be creative and adaptive when our schools went all virtual in September, stepping up and opening an in-person Remote Access Learning Hub; a safe place to provide students’ academic support with much-needed emotional and social enrichment.

The Hub helps up to 18 at-risk students access school Monday thru Friday. EDGE offers students technical support and encouragement during the online school day, two nutritional meals and a snack from Brandywine School District, recreational activities in the fresh air, and emotional support through activities such as yoga, team building, and arts programming.

When the school day ends, students stay for three hours of after-care, where The Music School of Delaware’s MELODY program provides an outlet for kindergarten through grade 2 students to experience the art of music through Rhythm, a Bucket Band percussion group, and the violin. Grades 3 through 5 participate in Bucket Band and gain enrichment through art, creative writing, yoga, storytelling, and STEM using learning tools that build self-esteem, confidence, resilience and coping mechanisms that are so necessary in addressing the effects of childhood trauma and stress.

Midweek Extra: Rob Gurnee of Lutheran Community Services

Interim Pastor David Mueller and Rob Gurnee of Lutheran Community Services

Interim Pastor David Mueller welcomes Rob Gurnee, executive director of Lutheran Community Services of Delaware, to today’s Midweek Extra.

LCS has been serving low-income families in Wilmington and New Castle County since 1959, assisting with emergency food, housing and many other needs.

The men discuss the ministries of LCS and how its work and that of other nonprofit agencies have been affected by the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

Rob also talks about the “Pick Your Own” LCS Walk/Run for Hunger and the new format for the popular annual fundraising event that many at St. Mark’s have been part of — as donors, runners and walkers. (Check out a few photos from previous events below.)

It’s a good time to make your plan for participating in this year’s Walk/Run for Hunger. As the name of this year’s event suggests, you can “Pick Your Own” route, pick your own day, pick your own starting time. Here’s what you need to know:

  • The event is open until September 19. Register and gather sponsorships now. YOU decide when and where you walk or run. It can be around your neighborhood, block, favorite walking trail, your back yard, wherever you wish to walk or run. Be creative!
  • Pick up your T-shirt at LCS headquarters at 2809 Baynard Blvd., St. Stephen’s Lutheran Church at 1301 N. Broom St. or at Good Shepherd Lutheran Church, 1530 Foulk Rd.
  • Take pictures or video of your walk if you are able (wearing your T-shirts, of course) and send them to LCS by email
  • Join the Zoom celebration online at 4 p.m. September 19 to culminate the event

REGISTER NOW! Individuals, churches, teams, dogs — you name it! — can register and collect sponsors OR support someone who is fundraising. If you need help, contact Alex with any questions. All proceeds go to LCS food programs.

Is compassion on your gift list?

The ELCA has put together a fantastic Good Gifts catalog, chock full of unique ideas that can make a real difference in people’s lives and support almost 80 ELCA ministries around the world. And none requires fighting with mall traffic!

To learn more, watch the ELCA video.

Here are other great options:

    Lutheran World Relief: This global effort works for sustainable development, helping families rise out of poverty and hunger. You can contribute a herd of animals or one or two. Families also receive training. The herds help them to earn income and find stability.
    Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service: Your gift helps vulnerable families who are fleeing unspeakable violence in search of a safe home. LIRS helps reunite families and provides real help and hope that can change the lives of those who need it most.

    Lutheran Community Services: LCS of Delaware helps individuals and families address food, housing and other essential needs with dignity and respect.

      Delaware-Maryland Synod: The Syndod’s “Strong Roots–Wide Branches” fund supports the ministry of Christ in the Delaware and Maryland regions.

Putting muscle in the message!

Runners at the start of the Lutheran Community Services Walk-Run Fundraiser

More than 160 people showed up at Lutheran Church of the Good Shepherd on Saturday, Sept. 21, to participate in Lutheran Community Services’ 2019 Walk/Run to end Hunger and Family Fun Day. In all, they raised $52,300 to benefit LCS’ food pantries in New Castle County.

St. Mark’s had another strong showing with 31 members registered and a fundraising total of $15,300!

In addition to the 5-kilometer walk/run, there were fun and games for children, including a bounce house, face painting and a chance to explore a fire truck from Talleyville Volunteer Fire Company. There was plenty of food, including hot dogs, brisket, watermelon, chips, cookies and drinks.

Musicians, including St. Mark’s own “Souls on Fire,” showcased their talents.

Many thanks to all those who helped with planning, including Barbara Breisch, Fred Melton, Margie Dodson, Brian Schmidt and Kyle Schuldt. Thanks also to Gwen Wisniewski and her mother, Kathleen, for cooking and Brian Schmidt for providing the smoked brisket. Finally, many thanks go to the hosts at Good Shepherd and their chairperson Linda Ulmanis for all of her vision, planning, and leadership.

— Kyle Schuldt

5K & Family Fun Day

A group of walkers during the 2018 event.

Help us fight hunger in Delaware and have some fun doing it! Join us for the 28th annual LCS Hunger Walk Run and (new!) Family Fun Day on Saturday, September 21, 2019.
The event, which is a fundraiser for Lutheran Community Services, will be at Good Shepherd Lutheran Church, 1530 Foulk Rd. in Brandywine Hundred this year.

A team enjoying the after-walk picnic.
After the walk/run, we get together for a picnic!

Registration is open now and can be done online at www.lcsde.org. Forms also are available in the narthex at St. Mark’s.
All proceeds go to fight hunger in Delaware — and the more sponsorships you get, the more people we can help. Please bring cans of food to contribute to our Community Food Drive.
In addition to the 5-kilometer walk/run and the 1-mile stroll, the plan for the day includes lots of fun, including a cookout, games, raffles, veggie garden tours and more.
Registration begins at 9 a.m. and the event begins at 10. If you raise $50, your fee is waived. If not, the fees are $25 for adults, $20 for youth. It’s all for a great cause!
I hope to see another great St. Mark’s turnout for this great event.
~Kyle Schuldt
A trophy with three St. Mark's team members.
Yes, there are prizes! And St. Mark’s often walks away with some hardware!

Lutheran Community Services seeks help to address food emergency

Lutheran Community Services is asking for help as the potential for a food emergency increases during the lengthy government shutdown.

In a recent email to supporters, LCS said the shutdown threatens to upset the safety net for many low-income households. More than 2,500 low-income households come to one of LCS’ 15 food distributions for nutritious food each month. Many also rely on SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) benefits, formerly known as Food Stamps, to obtain food. February’s SNAP benefits are being paid early, on January 20, but after that no further benefits will be provided as long as the shutdown continues.

If SNAP benefits cannot be funded, LCS expects a dramatic increase in the need for food assistance as LCS becomes a primary source of food for those in need. As one pantry client expressed it, “there will be a line down the street and around the corner!” LCS estimates needing to buy up to three times the amount of food normally purchased to meet the emergency. This would include providing more food to existing clients and meeting the needs of new ones. Even if the shutdown is resolved, LCS expects a surge in February because of the early distribution of that month’s SNAP benefits.

In order to get ahead of this situation, LCS is asking for financial help. Please visit the LCS website — www.lcsde.org — for more information on how you can help or call (302) 654-8886.

Also on the LCS website is information about how to organize a food drive as well as a grocery list of the food most often needed, including:

Ravioli, spaghetti, meatballs in sauce
Tuna/chicken/salmon
Beef stew
Corned beef hash
Ham and other canned meats
Canned fruit
Canned vegetables – spinach, yams, carrots etc.
Soup/stew
Beans
Pasta
Crackers
Macaroni and cheese
Cereal, grits, cereal bars, oatmeal
Peanut butter
Fruit juice
Dry or evaporated milk
Baking mixes for pancakes, waffles