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Sunshine Cathedral (Fort Lauderdale, Florida, USA) On April 17, from 9 am to 3 pm, vaccinations were given on the campus of Sunshine Cathedral. Six hundred vaccinations were available to those who made a reservation. Vaccine reservations were easily made at Sunshinecathedral.org.
MCC New York (USA) also provided space and opportunity for a pop up vaccination site. More detail and pictures will be in the next issue of FOCUS.
Joy MCC (Orlando, Florida, USA) also hosted a Pop-Up vaccination day in March!
Gracia Viva (Dallas, Texas, USA) is helping the Spanish speaking community by registering them for the COVID 19 vaccine. Providing a bilingual service onsite and by phone. More than 1300 people have been helped with this effort.
Black History Month Concert
Resurrection MCC (Houston, Texas, USA) celebrated Black History Month in song! Here’s a link to their virtual Concert: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ljDyCiKA7Dg
Food for the Soul
MCC of the Palm Beaches (MCCPB), Florida, USA, began a new program during the COVID pandemic. Because MCCPB has a long history of helping people with HIV, and because they had to close their food pantry due to the risk factors for volunteers, they decided to provide a program that addresses food insecurity among people living with HIV. Food for the Soul is a food delivery service for those who are living with HIV and are food insecure due to physical and/or transportation difficulties. MCCPB currently has 50 clients enrolled. They deliver food to each client twice a month (approximately 80-100 deliveries a month). They provide nonperishables, meat, bread, eggs, milk, and plenty of fresh vegetables. (Fresh vegetables are the most frequently requested food.) The program is run by MCCPB’s HIV program director. The rest of the volunteer staff from MCCPB shop, pack, and deliver. Food is purchased from local farm stands as well as superstores like Walmart and Costco.
MCC of the Quad Cities (Davenport, Iowa, USA) has a mini-pantry that they stock daily for those in need.
Congratulations Sunshine Cathedral! (Fort Lauderdale, Florida, USA) In 2020, Sunshine Cathedral’s online programming received over 5 million views! WOW! Despite the challenges presented by COVID-19, they successfully maintained their 7 day a week programming.
Good News Stories
Libres por Amor (Free for Love) ICM, Puebla, Mexico celebrated Holy Week from a queer perspective with open conversational tables transmitted live through social media. It included discussions on sexuality, feminist theology and queer theology. This was a great way to educate and share God’s love with all, seeking liberation and reintegration of folks to God’s Love. https://www.facebook.com/icmlibresporamor
Fraternidad Incluyente (Aguascalientes, Mexico)
https://www.facebook.com/Fraternidad-Incluyente-AGS-179023269425320 Fraternidad Incluyente hosted a Maundy Thursday dinner and the foot-washing ritual among sex workers as well as brothers and sisters with HIV and AIDS. They also provided a Friday Dinner and pastoral care to sex workers.
Gracia Viva (Dallas, Texas, USA), https://www.facebook.com/Graciaviva1 celebrated an Easter Worship experience sharing the Good News and hope with the unaccompanied children staying in Dallas before reuniting with their families. Pastor Isabel Marquez said, “To share with these children is to reconnect with our roots, with our families left in Mexico and to accompany these children in these uncertain moments. It is to never forget what we experienced once in life as immigrants too.”
On Easter Sunday, MCC of the Lehigh Valley (Bethlehem, Pennsylvannia, USA) welcomed three new church members.
MCC Knoxville (Knoxville, Tennessee, USA) included a Renewal of Baptismal Vows and a Renewal of Membership Covenant in their Easter Sunday celebration.
THANK YOU to all the musicians who participated in our Holy Saturday Easter Concert! The video link is here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gfXfu4p35-4&t=32s
Lent Collaboration: A diverse group of MCC clergy (plus 3 non-MCC clergy) collaborated to offer a Lenten reflective spiritual practice and for lectionary preaching preparation. All used the same resources in their local churches produced by A Sanctified Art (https://sanctifiedart.org) called Again and Again. The clergy met weekly for discussion of the lectionary texts and preaching suggestions in the resource. They took turns facilitating the discussion. Likewise, they shared the leadership of the Lenten reflection groups that were open to their congregations and were offered Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday throughout Lent. All were richer for the shared experience. The group was initiated by Reverends Wes Mullins and Lauren Bennett at MCC Greater St. Louis (Missouri, USA).
Rev Alexya Salvador (São Paulo) made history in Brazil again! This time the headlines read “¡HECHO HISTÓRICO! MUJER TRAVESTI SERÁ LA PRIMERA EN ADOPTAR A DOS NIÑAS TRANS EN BRASIL” (English translation: First Trans Woman to Adopt Two Trans Girls in Brazil) Rev. Alexya and her husband, Roberto, have now adopted 3 children. For pictures and the full story, click on this link and use Google translate: https://los40.com.mx/los40/2021/04/15/viral/1618499496_693810.html
Rev. Marsha Warren, Exodus MCC (Abilene, Texas, USA), continues to make news! She has been interviewed by local TV stations and newspapers multiple times. Most recently she was interviewed about the purpose and plans for their local PRIDE celebrations. Way to keep MCC visible! Kudos Rev. Marsha!
Welcome Gerald Hayo, the leader of our recently authorized MCC Community in Africa. Emerging Inclusive Ministry: A MCC Community is located in Mombasa, Kenya. Gerald has been a regular participant in our Holy Conversations occurring in Africa and also associated with Other Sheep. Welcome Gerald to the MCC Family. [email protected]
MCC of the Quad Cities (Davenport, Iowa, USA) held a Bearing Witness Prayer Vigil against gun violence at the church property while there was a gun show across the street at the Fairgrounds.
API Resources now available!
Check out these seasonal resources from re:Worship
Mother’s Day Resources https://re-worship.blogspot.com/2012/03/mothers-day-resource-index.html
Father’s Day Resources https://re-worship.blogspot.com/search?q=Father%27s+Day