Join the Local & World Missions Team in Advocating to End Hunger
On May 27th and June 3, St. Paulians are invited to join other Ithaca-area churches in an Offering of Letters with the Christian hunger advocacy group Bread for the World. On June 10th, the letters will be blessed and sent to Washington DC for the lobby day June 11th.
For over 40 years, Bread for the World– founded by pastors on the Lower East Side of New York City but now based in Washington DC– has hosted the Offering of Letters to demonstrate and elicit bipartisan support for measures that address the causes and effects of hunger. An Ithaca-area Offering of Letters initiative has been growing among local churches over the past 5 years, aiming this year for an Offering of 700 letters among 7-8 churches. (Last year, 4 churches wrote 360 letters!)
This year’s Offering of Letters addresses federal budget issues that impact children and families, most specifically the SNAP (Supplemental Food Assistance) program, tax credits for low income workers, and global humanitarian relief programs. From Bread for the World (check out their fact sheets and citations at bread.org/ol) come these challenging statistics: In the U.S., food insecurity, although declining, continues to plague some 40 million people, over 12% of U.S. households; while globally, some 815 million people live in hunger, a rise in numbers after a decade of decline. SNAP and the earned income tax credit have helped move millions of people in the U.S. out of poverty, the largest portion of whom are children; while U.S. foreign hunger assistance and humanitarian relief save millions of lives each year. Bread for the World reminds us that, as Christians, we are called to be a voice for the least of these, with the grace and generosity of Christ that transcends personal, political and national bounds.
Bread for the World urges personal letters, directed to our Congressional leaders. A sample letter follows. On Sunday May 27th and Sunday June 3, your Local/World Missions Team will have an informational table, copies of sample letters, and letter-writing materials. Letters written by St. Paulians will be dedicated on June 10 and hand-carried by the Ithaca-area Bread for the World volunteers to a statewide gathering that week. Alternatively, if you want to read more about the Offer, study up on SNAP or other issues, and write at your leisure, mailing information for our Congressional delegation will be available. The Bread for the World website, www.bread.org, has a wealth of information and resource links.
And, of course, prayers, discernment, questions and conversation about hunger issues and advocacy in our midst are always in order.
*Sample letter from Bread for the World:
Dear Sen. __ or Dear Rep. ___:
As Congress works on the fiscal year 2019 budget and spending bills, I ask you to invest in and protect key programs that will reduce hunger and poverty.
Our country and the world have made progress against hunger and poverty in recent decades. I want you to continue to invest in programs like SNAP
and tax credits for low-income workers. Continued funding for programs that reduce hunger and poverty around the world are also important to me.
My faith calls me to urge you to make public investments that will move us toward the end of hunger.
[Your Name and Address]
Middle School Mystery Trip!
If your child is in grades 6-12 and would like to participate in the Mystery Trip on June 16, please contact Youth Coordinator, Alexa Allmann, by June 1 to sign up or for more information. It will be a full day of fun and fellowship!
Global Roots Play School Auction
Help support scholarships for families of Global Roots Play School! Make a bid on auction items with the following link: https://www.32auctions.com/globalrootsplayschool