So many people have been asking what they can do to help during this crisis. I want to give you an updated list of some practical ways you can help our church, our community, and our world:
#1 Help keep our Blessing Boxes stocked. Consider choosing a Blessing Box and as a family, restock it with non-perishable food, toiletries, and even notes and cards of encouragement. This can be done by going directly to the Blessing Box. Here are the addresses to our Boxes:
- 413 Geddes Avenue, Charleston
- 928 Savage Road, Charleston
- 2758 East Surrey Drive, North Charleston
- 1998 Hugo Avenue, North Charleston
- 1050 St. Andrews Blvd., Charleston
#2 Help keep our church Food Pantry stocked. As you might have guessed, supplies are diminishing, and the church will continue to assist as many families as we can. The church will gladly accept donations dropped off at our church. Historically, an even better way has been through Coastal’s Amazon Food Pantry Wish List (however, be aware that many of these items are now out of stock). These items when ordered through Amazon are shipped directly to the church where they are then distributed to the community. The wish list contains many of the more common items used in both the pantry and our Blessing Boxes.
#3 Volunteer to help keep the Food Pantry organized. If you have an hour to spare to help organize the Food Pantry, this would be a great opportunity for a family wanting to serve. This opportunity includes putting new donations onto the shelves, checking for expired and damaged items, and packing food bags ready to go when people come for food. There is also the opportunity to pack replenishment kits for future distribution to our Blessing Boxes.
#4. Operation Christmas Child Donations & Card Writing. Operation Christmas Child is now an ongoing, year round mission of our church. Each month we are collecting different items/supplies. This month we are collecting bars of soap & washcloths. In April we are collecting small stuffed animals (that will fit in a shoebox). We also need volunteers to start writing Christmas Cards that will go in the boxes. We will provide the cards, you simply have to pick them up at the church.
#5. Start an Online LIFE Group. Now, more than ever before, we’ve got to do everything we can to help connect people and provide an outlet for spiritual growth and community in this new reality we’re all facing. Online Groups are part of that answer. We’re going to make it as easy and simple as possible. If you’ve ever used a computer and surfed the web at all, you CAN DO THIS. The technology we’ve been using is ZOOM (although others are available). Pastor Scott Huff will provide a training and answer any questions you might have. For the Groups themselves, we’re really looking for Prayer & Devotional based Groups (although you can choose any study you want to do). For the devotion, each week we’re going to provide you with small group questions from the previous week’s sermon. Then you simply share prayer requests and pray together. All of that and more (praises, announcements, etc.) can happen online. These Groups can be anywhere from 30-40 minutes in length to longer. If you are interested, go to this link and fill out the Online LIFE Group Leader Form. If you have any questions, please reach out to Pastor Scott Huff.
6. Grab & Go Drive Through Food Service. People can literally pull up, roll down their window and pick up a ToGo box of food (we’ll even say a little prayer for them)! We’re trying to serve the Oakland Elementary School families who might be picking up food during the week from the CCSD Grab & Go – or any families who might just be in need. Feel free to pick up a box and deliver it to someone in need. When we post the times on social media we need you to share and help spread the word. We’ll be changing the menu from week to week. This week the Drive Through will be open from 9am-11am and we’ll be serving pancakes & link sausages. Obviously, we’re trying to limit the number of on hand volunteers. But if you’d like to help, respond to this email and we’ll see if there is an open slot. We’ll need traffic volunteers, kitchen volunteers, box hand out volunteers, and Food Pantry volunteers.
7. Give. If you’re a regular giver, please continue to be faithful with your generosity at Coastal. Your weekly gifts are a vital resource that allows us to continue the work that God has called us to do, and our in-person Sunday services only represent a small portion of that work. When you continue to give during this crisis, your gifts allow us to maintain critical ministries that many depend on. You can give online at any time at coastalcommunitychurch.org/give/, or securely by texting to 843-277-8337 with the amount you wish to give. If you normally give on Sunday mornings by check, cash or card swiping, would you consider giving online. Thank you so much for your faithfulness!
8. Pick Up & Put Out Easter Yard Signs. Last year, one of the most effective advertising we did for Easter was our Yard Signs that we put up all over West Ashley. Since we are not having our Sunday morning services in person, we need people to come by the church and pick yard signs that you can put in your front yard and all over Charleston in strategic places.
9. Phone Calls, Deliveries, etc. And then of course, there are those in our church and community who don’t have access to technology, who need a simple phone call of encouragement. There are also those who might need food or supplies delivered to their home. You can sign up for these and other such services here.
Church Office Hours for volunteering, picking up or dropping off food, Operation Christmas Child items, Yard Signs: Monday-Thursday, 9am-11am & 1pm-3pm; Friday, 9am-12noon. If you are a male and already have a key and code to the church and would be willing to man the office in any of our available time slots, please reach out to Ashley. If you have any questions, please call the church office at 843-571-1777.
Coastal let’s do this! Let’s not let this opportunity to BE the Church in this defining moment pass us by. As always, I love you and love being your Pastor. And I’m forever grateful for your creativity, generosity, and willingness to do WHATEVER it takes to keep reaching, serving, and loving people. And right now, this is what it takes!
LIFE & LOVE!