Service Check-Up: July 2015

Service Check-Up

Holy Covenant UMC 

July 2015

In This Issue

Sack Summer Hunger

Food Pantry

Human Trafficking



Youth First

International Peace Day

Elijah Connection


Upcoming Meetings

Missions           July 23 6:30

Advocates        July 14 7:00

Check Out Advocates:


Check out the Holy Covenant Website for the new updated description of your Advocates for Justice and Peace.  With fidelity to the DNA of Holy Covenant, we invite all to join us at our regularly scheduled monthly meetings.  Next meeting will be held on Tuesday, June 16th.  We hope see you there!

Consider this:

44% of our neighborhood has no more than a High School education.


28% of the families in our neighborhood are below the poverty level.  For a family of 4, that’s $23,850.


Our neighbors have a higher employment rate than the rest of Carrollton.  It’s 75% compared to 73% for the city.


Average income in our neighborhood is $42,718. 

This is the fourth month for the Service Check-Up.  In this email, we cover the activities of Missions, Advocates for Peace and Justice, and Elijah Connection.  Our goal is to keep you informed, and ensure you’re aware of all the opportunities for servanthood.

As a new information source, we’re anxious to hear what you think.  Simply Reply to this newsletter to provide your feedback.  We strive to make this valuable for you.  Let us hear from you!

Sack Summer Hunger



The Sack Summer Hunger program is in full swing now.  It’s running smoothly, but could still use your help.  Consider how you might answer this call.  


There are 4 primary jobs required to be done each week, and you may sign up for a single week:


Pick Up:  these volunteers will go to Metrocrest to pick up the food for our families.  A truck or van is required, and volunteers will need to lift heavy bulk items.

Sorting:  these volunteers will separate the bulk foods into individual containers for the families. This is a great family task!


Distribution:  these volunteers will be at the church to greet families as they come to pick up their food.  Names are checked and calls are made to anyone who didn’t pick up.


Delivery:  these volunteers will deliver food to the families who are unable to pick up from the church.


Please contact Lori Erwin at [email protected] to volunteer.

School Supplies Drive 



While summer seems endless about now, we know that’s not true.  Soon we’ll see pencils and notebooks and backpacks in stores, reminding us that school starts again soon.  


For many children, this is a difficult time.  They’ll start school without the necessary supplies. Holy Covenant will do our best to  help with that!  In August, we’ll begin collecting school supplies to help our neighbors. The drive will culminate on August 16th,in conjunction with the church’s recognition of Back to School/Back to Church celebration.


Watch for more information at the Service Station.  And start adding a school supply or two to your shopping cart!

Additional Need

Missions – Food Pantry

What:  Food Pantry pick up from Metrocrest


When:  Tuesday – choose to help once, once a month, or every week!


How:  contact Colleen Evans ([email protected]) to find out more or volunteer


Who: YOU!!!


Human Trafficking



During May, your Advocates were represented by Roy Evans at the Symposium on Human Trafficking in Dallas.  This justice issue is alarming at both local and international levels.  The Symposium resolution is to end worldwide human trafficking by 2025.  There are intersections between these two justice issues, Immigration & Human Trafficking,  and we will add our voices to the call for Justice.    

Reconciling Ministries Network (RMN)


Reconciling Ministries Network is a collection of UMC individuals, communities, churches, student organizations, and others who support full inclusion of all people in the life of the United Methodist Church.  Currently, the Discipline (law of the church) specifically discriminates against LBGTQ persons.  Advocates for Justice and Peace  have joined the movement to publicly state that  all persons should be allowed full participation in the life of the church.  The Reconciling team has completed one-on-one discussions with committee chairs and church leadership, and a congregational survey has been prepared for review and edit by church leadership.   Future steps in the process of whether to become or not become “Reconciling” will be determined post-survey.  Advocates will also sponsor two participants at the Annual RMN Convocation in August.   Our own Jason Redick has been invited as a presenter at this event in San Antonio.

TCADP (Texas Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty) 




With the 6/18 execution of Gregory Russeau, Texas has now executed 9 people, with 5 more scheduled in 2015.   Only one other state, Missouri has a scheduled execution in 2015.  While there are noticeable “fault lines” in the traditional support of the death penalty, especially within the conservative movement because of high costs, Texas continues to perform state sanctioned killing at an unrivaled rate.  Your Advocates for Peace and Justice conduct 30-minute vigils on every execution date.  This is a time to come together, pray, remember the victims and make a public statement about state sanctioned killing.  Join us and meet in front of the HC sign.  Upcoming dates are: July 16- Clifton Williams and August 12- David Lopez.  Five death row inmates have received temporary “stays” during 2015.

Youth First


Breakfast for Dinner” provided by HC has become one of the favorite events at the Dallas Resource Center’s Youth First Facility that provides support to marginalized youth and their families.  The next scheduled date is Friday evening, July 10th.  For those who would like to assist, please contact Mary Mitchell Trimble (214-232-5736)

International Peace Day


Planning is in process for a Holy Covenant event in preparation for International Peace Day.  September 21st is the day recognized internationally, and we will have an event at Holy Covenant on Sunday, September 13th.  Themed “3 books- One Meaning“, we will explore and reflect on peace from three religions’ perspectives.  

Telling Your Story

Elijah Connection


For the next few newsletters, Elijah Connection will be sharing their stories with the congregation to help others begin thinking about their own story.  Reviewing our experiences helps us understand where and how God is calling us to serve.


Clark Ackerman

It seems we hear all the time about people “living in the margins”, but rarely do we stop to think about what that really means. 


We recognize the obvious:

The homeless man on a corner with the sign.

The woman living in a shelter in order to avoid abuse at home.

The child who must skip a meal simply because the family can’t provide.


But let me go back in time for a moment…to talk about my passion for those “in the margins”.


When I moved back to Dallas several years ago, I was intent on finding a new church, and had a specific goal in mind.  I had, for years, been a member of Concord-St. Andrews UMC in Bethesda, MD, and had even served as a youth pastor at Mill Creek Parish UMC.  But those two churches were “comfortable” suburban congregations whose ideas of meeting the needs of the marginalized meant either a fund raiser or a once-a-year youth mission trip for a few days to the Appalachian Mountains to re-roof houses in disrepair.


Don’t get me wrong, those were very important service opportunities.  But I wanted something more. I wanted involvement. I wanted commitment. I wanted dedication. And most of all I wanted hearts and passion.  So when I moved back to Dallas finding that church became my mission.


After years of living in Plano (and trust me, there’s not a more “comfortable” suburban setting than Plano, no disrespect intended) I bought a house and moved to Carrollton. And after going to several Carrollton area churches, I happened upon Holy Covenant. That church on the corner that I thought was an office building. At first, it was the marquee that caught my attention.  “You are welcome here…”  I’ve heard that before but the first time I walked into the sanctuary I felt something different, something real. I felt passion. 


When Pastor Carol first asked me to participate in a North Texas Conference pilot called the “Luke 4 Initiative” I gladly accepted.  The goal of the initiative was to build a relationship with the community, and I had heard Carol talk about the Peters Colony residents for some time. That was our community. When the Christmas season rolled around, Holy Covenant was in the community, not just there giving computers to families, but providing support.  Those are families living in the margins.  And when the tragedy that was Elijah was confirmed I couldn’t help but think, “How could a child, who has nothing but hope and joy ahead in life, commit suicide?” But then the answer was almost as revealing: Elijah lived in the margins of life, where hope and joy may not have existed. 


That’s why I’m invested in the Elijah Connection. Not only do I believe in the work we are doing as a team, but more importantly, I believe in the hearts, and the passions, of Holy Covenant Church.