The Loaves and Fishes ministry at St. Jude’s Catholic Community was privileged to take part in ACTION’s Serve Day on June 6. Our Eye to Eye ministry (collecting used eyeglasses for those in need) had volunteers at Kick-Off locations to pick up eyeglasses which participants had collected at their churches. We were delighted to receive 568 pair of eyeglasses (429 of them new reading glasses!) and 21 magnifying glasses and mirrors. We understand more donations are still coming in!
The used eyewear will be given to the Moorpark Lions Club who has them refitted for citizens who would otherwise be without. The new reading glasses will be donated to service agencies assisting local homeless or very low-income residents.
We are so grateful for the time and effort you gave to help us in the ministry. It is with joy that we facilitate your generosity. Please feel free to drop eyeglasses at St. Jude’s in Westlake. We will happily pass them on with our regular collections. Thank you from the bottom of our hearts. We look forward to working with you again next Serve Day.
This year, a group of seniors received a very special Easter surprise made by a women’s ministry group and delivered by a local church. These Easter bags were lovingly made for each senior at the apartments with their needs in mind. Each bag containing food, essentials, goodies, and a special gift for the senior. As the church joyfully delivered the bags with a “Happy Easter” greeting, many of the residents commented on how long its been since they’ve received anything for Easter and how much they appreciated being thought of and cared for in this very special way. What a simple joy it is to serve someone in such a sweet way.
Reflecting on the joy of that day and the love that was showed to those seniors, I’m reminded of the greatest example of love that has ever been shown for us all; the crucifixion . For Christians the world over the significance of Easter is paramount. It represents the crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus Christ. The crucifixion displaying the unconditional love and forgiveness of God and the resurrection giving us the undeserved gift of eternal life. The picture painted through the bible is vividly clear, “The Gospels do not explain the Resurrection; the Resurrection explains the Gospels. Belief in the Resurrection is not an appendage to the Christian faith; it is the Christian faith.” (John S. Whale)
Taking care of the least of these.
The Miracle of Christmas
with gifts, that gifts come in many forms. Sometimes they come in the form of toys or a meal, while other times it’s the opportunity to see family and friends or catch up on some much needed time off from work.
This year we have the opportunity to serve thousands of families through our annual event, Christmas Shoppe, it will be a day of all kinds of gifts being given. There will be the aforementioned gifts and then there will be the gifts that represent the true miracle of Christmas; joy, hope, and love. There will be joy spread from presents selected, treats eaten, and music heard. Hope will be shared between volunteers and guests as relationships are built and communities are brought together. And, love will be felt through the gentle hand of Christ and his overwhelming gift of salvation.
As the Holy spirit stirs the generosity of the Ventura County churches, toys and volunteers seem to pour in reminding us that we can share the true gift of Christmas by giving to others. Thus bringing to life the old adage, It is better to give than to receive.
“Miracles just don’t happen without the activity of the Holy Spirit. It was true then for this amazing event and it’s true now. So here is a lesson for all of us from the Christmas story, and it applies to us not just at Christmas, but every other day of our lives. We cannot live the life God wants for us, and achieve the dreams he has for us, without the power of the Holy Spirit. “ –Wally Odom (in the context of the miracle birth of Jesus)