Monthly Grace UMC Missions Focus
March 2023 – Lakes Area Food Shelf
During Lent our missional giving is all designated for the Lakes Area Food Shelf.  We will be collecting a variety of items each week to help stock the food shelf, and cash is always welcome too. 

There are envelopes labeled for this mission on the back table or you can simply put any special giving into the offering plate with a note on your gift that it is to be designated to this mission.

Please note on your offering if it is for the March Mission Focus.

If you are mailing something to the church, please use our PO Box and not the church address.
Grace United Methodist Church
PO Box 276, Pequot Lakes, MN 56472
Prior Monthly Mission Focus
February 2023 – Sharing Bread Soup Kitchen
In February, our missional giving goes to the Sharing Bread Soup Kitchen in Brainerd. Our church has supported this mission for many, many years, and a few volunteers from Grace continue to help there on a monthly basis.  

There are envelopes labeled for this mission on the back table or you can simply put any special giving into the offering plate with a note on your gift that it is to be designated to this mission.  At the end of the month, after Ash Wednesday, the final Sunday will begin our designated giving for the Lakes Area Food Shelf.

January 2023Lakes Area Restorative Justice Program
In January our missional giving goes to the Lakes Area Restorative Justice Program.  There are envelopes in the pews, or you can simply put any special giving into the offering plate with a note on your gift that it is to be designated to this mission.
December 2022 – Three Local Causes
Our December Missional giving supports three different areas. The gifts will be split between The Sharing Bread Soup Kitchen in Brainerd, Mid-Minnesota Women’s Shelter, and the Pastor’s discretionary fund.
November 2022Mission Focus is Lakes Area Food Shelf
Our November missional giving is designated for the Lakes Area Food Shelf. This month the funds donated will be given to the food shelf specifically to support the Thanksgiving meal boxes that will be distributed by the food shelf.  There is a display table to leave a donation in the narthex, and sign-up opportunities to help in other ways in connection to the food shelf this month.
October 2022 – Mission Focus is Brennecke Family
The monthly missional giving for October is designated for the Brennecke family to aid their ministry and missions. Kim is the daughter of Doris and John Longnecker from Grace. Below is a brief overview of what they do currently.  
Kim and Steve Brennecke are presently serving in the Global Ministry Center of Baptist Mid-Missions in Cleveland, Ohio, where Steve works in the administration. Steve directs stewardship ministries, working with donors who give to support the ministries of the mission. The main focus of the mission is church planting. The Global Ministry Center supports nearly 500 missionaries in almost 50 nations. The mission promotes various planned giving strategies, as well as current donations and estate planning that will aid the ministry in future years. Baptist Mid-Missions also manages a charitable gift annuity program through which donors receive lifetime income in exchange for their gifts, the remainder of which help fund the outreach and services of the mission. 
In addition, Kim and Steve are involved in their church, and are presently helping to head up an ESL outreach program to local greenhouse and agricultural workers whose preferred language is Spanish. They enjoy serving others in this way, as they build friendships in which to share the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
September 2022 –  Emma Norton
Emma Norton Program Goals:
    • Provide safe, secure, affordable housing for women, individuals, and families in transition.
    • Provide support, advocacy and referrals to community services for individuals and families to stabilize their lives, build confidence and enable self-sufficiency.
    • Use our collective power to build collaborative communities and partnerships to achieve systemic change.
    • Raise awareness of our programs to better serve individ uals and families in need.
    • Through radical compassion and radical acceptance, provide a comprehensive array of services that foster harmony, wholeness and completeness.
    • Create inclusive environments that support empowerment, diversity, innovation and adaptability to promote healing.
Emma Norton History/Background 
Emma Norton Services has over 100 years of history serving the Twin Cities. The organization was founded in 1917 when a Minnesotan, Emma Norton, gave a gift to United Methodist Women to fund a program to support young women and girls in Minnesota. With her gift, the UMW created the “Methodist Home for Girls” to house young women traveling to the Twin Cities from rural Minnesota for work and education.
In 1967, the organization moved to its current location on Robert Street in Saint Paul, and became Emma Norton Residence. Much like the transformational housing Emma Norton Services now provides, the organization changed to meet the needs of the community. Over the next few decades, Emma Norton Residence served a variety of populations, including deaf students and families with loved ones in long-term care at Regions Hospital.
As Minnesota’s unhoused population grew in the 1990s, the organization was called again to change, and turned focus to helping homeless women who experienced mental health or chemical dependency challenges. With the addition of Emma’s
Place in 2002, Emma Norton expanded services to families as well.
Emma Norton Services has continued to grow to help more people in need. In the past decade, the organization has expanded to include SOAR Practitioners who assist residents and outside clients in finding greater self-sufficiency, Peer Support Specialists, and the Scattered-Site Housing Program, which supports families and individuals moving into independent apartment living in Ramsey County. With the addition of these services, Emma Norton now serves over 300 people annually, including children and adults of all genders.
Today, Emma Norton is a radically compassionate and inclusive organization, using evidence-based policies such as harm-reduction and eliminating length-of-stay restrictions. We meet clients where they are and walk with them on their journey of recovery.
August 2022 – Grace UMC Local Teachers
In August the funds collected will be used to purchase gift cards for local teachers connected to Grace UMC.
July 2022 – Lakes Area Habitat for Humanity
 MISSION: Seeking to put God’s love into action, Habitat for Humanity brings people together to build homes, community and hope.
VISION: Carrying out the teachings of Christ, LAHFH strives to ensure that everyone, everywhere has at least a simple, decent place to call home.
ACTION: Partnering with families in need, volunteers build or renovate homes and serve as agents of change throughout the affiliate.
OUTCOME: Working in communities throughout the affiliate, LAHFH helps create a culture wherein affordable housing becomes a matter of conscience.
June 2022 – Grace UMC Youth Group and Youth Chosen Charity
The June Mission Focus donations will be split between needs for theGrace UMC Youth Group and with a Charity that the Youth will choose. 
May 2022 – Native American Ministries Sunday & Conference Love Offering
May 1st is Native American Ministries Sunday in the United Methodist Church. Our missional offering this week will go this special Sunday conference ask. Please note on your offering if it is to be directed to this worthy cause.
The rest of May’s missional giving will go towards our church gift to the “Love Offering” to be received at the Annual Conference, held later this month.  Additional information can be found on the Conference website link below. 
April 2022 – Heifer International and Pastor’s Discretionary Fund
April’s special mission giving goes to Heifer International and the Pastor’s discretionary fund (this has been used to supplement scholarships, purchase emergency gas cards, and to support special mission projects among other things).
March 2022 – Lakes Area Food Shelf
Our Missional giving for the month of March is The Lakes Area Food Shelf. All donations given this month will be given as part of our food shelf challenge. Donations given during month are traditionally matched for local food shelves, so your cash donation goes farther!