Mission of Church in the World
The Division of the Mission of the Church in the World gives scholarships for mission and work camp trips, supports NWA churches in their promotion of the “5 for 5 “ fund raising campaigns for the wider church and is a clearinghouse for mission, local and in the world.
The Division on the Mission of the Church in the World supports local congregations in areas of mission, stewardship, and social concerns. We are currently working to promote the 5-for-5 program of United Church of Christ mission offerings: Our Church’s Wider Mission, Neighbors in Need, One Great Hour of Sharing, Strengthen the Church, and The Christmas Fund.
If you would like help in adding your church to the list of 5-for-5 churches, please contact the Division on Mission of the Church in the World through the Association Office or through the chair, Reverend Bryan Simon, firstname.lastname@example.org
Do you want to focus on mission in a lively way? Invite one of our mission speakers to preach some Sunday morning: Carol Merriman (especially on Back Bay), Kay Treu (especially on Back Bay), and Elizabeth Hazel (mission in general). Or contact the chair, Bryan Simon (see above) for more information.
Survey of Association Churches
In 2018 and 2019, our committee members surveyed as many congregations as we could reach by personal contact, phone calls, and email to see what type of mission work is being done in our quarter of the state. We gathered information from 40 of the 60 churches in the Northwest Association (66% of the total!).
In our surveys, we found that:
- Nearly half of our churches support their local food pantries, and the Park Falls church actually has the community food pantry in their church building!
- A couple churches have built “Little Free Food Pantries” on the church grounds. Community UCC in Medford calls theirs a “Blessing Box” with the request: “Take what you need, bring what you can, and above all, be blessed!”
- Seven of the churches responding participate in prison ministry in either a very active role or at least through donations.
- Ten of the forty churches surveyed help plan or serve community meals. • Some have “adopted” local families or children to be sure their needs are met. • Some churches take special offerings on a fairly regular basis for local community or more far-reaching needs.
- Several churches received scholarships from our Division for trips to Back Bay Mission in Biloxi and Pine Ridge Mission in South Dakota.
Many churches had novel ideas that others might like to try:
- St. Paul’s UCC in Ellsworth hosts “Gobbler’s Gallop,” a Family Fun Run organized by the youth group to raise funds for Pierce County Food Shelf. The church also helped organize and sponsor the Ellsworth Farmers’ Market.
- Namekagon Church in Earl held a bake sale at the county fair to buy books for the children in the county’s Headstart program. Women from the church take turns reading a book to the children each month, and the students each get their own copy of the book to keep.
- The quilters at Plymouth Congregational in Eau Claire make 60 to 80 quilts (and sometimes more) each year for local Women’s Shelters and for children of low-income families. They also sent quilt blocks to the Wollongong Modern Quilt Guild in New South Wales, Australia. This group put out a request for quilt squares to make blankets for families who lost their homes in the massive bushfires across Australia over the past several months. The Plymouth Quilters include members from Plymouth, First Congregational, and Truax churches in Eau Claire, and Namekagon Church in Earl.
- Plymouth Church also hosts an annual Diaper Driver for a local pregnancy center. • Congregational UCC Church in Mellen has a new video-equipped church building with auditorium space so it can be used as a community center.
- St. Stephen’s UCC in Merrill and First Congregational UCC in Wisconsin Rapids co-hosted a “Sisters Building Sisters” retreat for young women in 2018.
- Union UCC in Three Lakes creates a calendar each year with other local churches. The calendar features people and places in the community.
- Conrath Congregational (in Conrath) made a donation to a local hospital for automated CPR equipment.
We’d still like to hear from you!
We’re sorry if we didn’t reach your church to hear about your programs and ideas. We found that launching a survey can be difficult. Many of us screen our phone calls to avoid answering nuisance calls. Many emails end up in a “spam” folder, and a lot of us are tired of filling out surveys! However, if you would like to share your information with us (or update what we already have), we’d still like to hear from you! Our survey form can be downloaded from the “Northwest Association-Resources” page on the right.
Below is the Directory of Mission Activities in Northwest Association Churches we have collected so far.
2019 Mission Survey records
Additional projects list
The Northwest Association has scholarship funds available for participation in workshops, trips, or other experiences which advance the constitutional charter of the Division on the Mission of the Church in the World (mission, social concerns, and stewardship). Click here for a scholarship application or contact the chair, Bryan Simon, for more information.
In addition to our mission trip scholarships for the Northwest Association, the Division of the Mission of the Church in the World is offering a new scholarship for funding NWA church-sponsored mission projects or programs (in your church or community) that focus on social, environmental or justice issues. For purposes of your planning, scholarships approved by our committee have a $200 cap. Scholarships will be granted as long as we have sufficient funds. Scholarship application