Grace Lutheran Church
Grace Lutheran Church, in partnership with HOPES and Friends of New Parents programs through Lutheran Social Services, has helped fulfill the mission of service to families since 1997. Grace Lutheran Church entered the partnership with the requirement that a pastor would sit on the volunteer board and they would contribute space to hold parenting groups. The church and its congregation took the initiative to expand their role in the partnership. Christ Care Groups within the church have sponsored holiday dinners for families with everything from food to clean up included.
The partnership between HOPES/Friends of New Parents and Grace Lutheran Church has turned out to be more promising and rewarding than originally expected. This past winter, the whole parish collected hats and mittens for the parents of the children affiliated with these organizations. For the past two years, the Social Ministry has had an angel tree during the Christmas season and adopted the program's children and mothers. A Christmas party with food, Santa and pictures is the follow-up to the angel tree celebration. Most families would not be able to have their children's pictures taken with Santa due to restrictive financial situations. Church confirmation classes have become involved with the Christmas party plans – decorating for the party, planning activities for the children, serving dinner, and assisting with clean-up.
Most recently, Grace Lutheran Church has held a collection for shoes for the children and a baby shower. Congregation members personally donated items for the shower that included diapers, bibs, clothing, and formula. Also, whenever the church's partners need to request something from the church, they respond in kind with more than was expected of them. Grace Lutheran Church, and all those affiliated with the church, has answered their call to service in a mighty way.