OUR OUTREACH MISSIONS
OXON HILL FOOD PANTRY: In the early years, Providence United Methodist Church maintained a strong outreach Food Pantry Ministry, under the watchful eyes of longtime members Billie and Lucy Shaddix. The Pantry provided emergency food to needy families in the Greater Fort Washington Community. When Providence and Fort Washington came together as one church family, it was decided to close the church pantry and join forces with the Oxon Hill Food Pantry. Harold (Hap) Harris and his wife Mary begin collecting food at the church and delivering it to the Oxon Hill Food Pantry.
Today, this ministry is still going strong. The Oxon Hill Food Pantry was established 31 years ago and serves more than 6,000 people annually out of one room in the rear of Our Saviour's Lutheran Church in Temple Hills, Maryland. It is an emergency pantry open three times per week. The Pantry requires no referrals and serves Southern Prince George's County.
PFWUMC’S ROCKING READERS program is enjoying its fifth year of partnership with Fort Washington Forest Elementary School. The program pairs volunteer readers from the church with kindergarten students in a one-on-one reading experience. In the comfort of a large and a small rocker, the two readers share the fun of exploring new books, with stories about Pete the Cat, make-believe pirates, animal races through the jungle, a wide-awake chicken, even “crayons that quit.” Over the course of a school year, each of the approximately 50 students in the two kindergarten classes comes to Rocking Readers several times. Friendships and trust are developed as each child has the exclusive attention of a caring adult . Today when we encounter fourth graders, who still remember their year with us, they smile and greet each of us with “Hi, Rocking Reader!” We remember, too. Additional readers are always needed and welcomed. Interested persons should see Ann Walker at church or call her at 301-292-2187.
The heart of Christian ministry is Christ’s ministry of outreaching love. Christian ministry is the expression of the mind and mission of Christ by a community of Christians that demonstrates a common life of gratitude and devotion, witness and service, celebration and discipleship. All Christians are called to this ministry of servanthood in the world to the glory of God and for human fulfillment (Taken from the Book of Discipline, 1996). This heart of Christian ministry is apparent in URBAN MINISTRY. On the third Sunday of every month at 7:30 a.m., a handful of P-FWUMC church members caravan to Third Street Church of God in Washington, DC. There, they meet up with fellow churchgoers from Fort Washington, Maryland’s Spirit of Elijah Kingdom Church, where the collective group participates in worship service with homeless men and women. At the end of service, participants receive a bag lunch lovingly prepared by P-FWUMC and Spirit of Elijah. Through this dedicated outreach, men and women who have fallen on hard times are brought in close connection with the word of God. Their faith and trust in the Lord is a blessing and a reminder that we are loved, always and unconditionally.