Monday, May 01, 2006
A Church in Missions: soles4souls
In preparation to move to a new church, I will be posting a series in celebration of the present church I serve.
When I came to Wadley UMC, 5 years ago, the former Pastor had shut down the Cooperative Parish, the food bank, and any other mission or community service they had been doing. They were a church dead in the water and sinking fast.
Now, this church is a mission minded, and action church. So today, I am going to blog about one of the missions this church has taken on because of the great commission: The mission is called soles4souls. They have a website and blog. We are in the process of collecting shoes and money for this mission organization to go to those who are shoeless. We will be also volunteering in their local warehouse, and in any way we are needed.
I noticed when I googled for their website, there were several organizations doing this type of ministry. This is a ministry that began because of the hurricanes Katrina and Rita. People were literally shoeless. A man involved in the shoe industry was concerned enough to begin to ship truckload of shoes, challenge the shoe industry, and others to do likewise. His friend, Paul Wilson, who is here in Wadley, worked out the details of distribution, even going down there himself to hand out boxes of shoes. Did they stop there? No. They now continue distributing in the US and overseas to those who need shoes. And believe it is amazing how many in the world are shoeless. (You can read more on their website.) They also now have a ware house, and store in Roanoke, AL that you can buy new namebrand shoes for far less than the discount price. My good friend, Jerry Cotney is managing the store. (He has a story too.)
Would this church have gotten involved before? Perhaps. Perhaps not. I am celebrating that they are doing it now. I am celebrating that because of prayer, spiritual leadership, teachings; they are responding to the great commission, Matthew 28:18-20. They are no longer a sinking ship, but a ship sailing with God at the helm, and all the sailors folllowing his commands.