How does Central UMC serve our neighbors, community and world? We are so glad you asked! Below you will see all the many things we are doing or have done to meet the physical and spiritual needs of the world. We invite you to join us!
Hurricane Michael Help
Members of our church, The Clarks, are taking a truck to Panama City, Florida, on Wednesday, October 24th with supplies to help with the recovery from Hurricane Michael. The Saints and Sinners Sunday School class is asking any church members that would like to help to bring the following supplies by Tuesday, October 23rd to the church office.
32-64 oz. Liquid laundry detergent Reusable Cleaning Wipe
16-40 oz Household cleaner (no sprays) 16-34 oz dish soap
4-8 oz pump spray air freshener 36-50 clothes pins
6-14 oz pump spray insect repellent or wipes 50-100 ft. clothesline
Scrub brushes with and without handles Kitchen gloves
Scouring pads (no stainless steel) N95 respirator dust mask
Work gloves (cotton w/leather or all leather) Paper Towels
Household batteries Toilet Paper
Energy drinks (Gatorade, etc.) Wet Wipes
33-45 gallon Heavy duty trash bags (construction grade)
HURRICANE FLORENCE RELIEF – HELP!!!! Volunteers are needed at the Mission Response Center in Terrell to sort and pack humanitarian aid for those affected by recent hurricanes. We will take a group of volunteers on Tuesday, November 6th. We will meet at 8:30 am in the church parking lot and travel together. Bring a sack lunch! What a great opportunity for us to help those who have lost so much!
PRAYING – Pray for all who have experienced loss. Pray for first responders as they enter difficult and painful situations. And pray for volunteers as they bring hope to a community.
DONATING MONEY -- Please be careful in choosing to whom you donate. We suggest you donate to 1) the Western North Carolina Conference UMC to support disaster response teams. Make checks payable to WNCCUMC, PO Box 2757, Huntersville, NC 28070, for “Disaster Response”, or 2) United Methodist Committee on Relief. Make checks payable Advance GCFA, PO Box 9068 GPO, New York, NY 10087-9068, for “Advance #901670”.
CLEANING KITS -- The Conference is asking each church to create 12 relief cleaning kits. Sunday School classes, small groups, Bible studies, etc. are encouraged to create one bucket. The church will transport buckets to the conference center. Kit assembly instructions are located at www.umcor.org/UMCOR/Relief-Supplies
PARTICIPATING IN A MISSION TEAM to assist flooded and damaged areas. It will take years to repair all of the damage Florence created. Mission teams will travel to areas to provide help and hope to the community.
We are partnering with the Abuse Prevention Council to provide service work to benefit their current residents! The youth of CUMC have had this on their hearts since we first worked with the APC in the Spring of 2018.
We are asking for your help, whether through service work or donation! We are looking for able and willing people to help clear brush, plant flowers, and provide a welcoming environment to those who have been through so much. We are also looking for those who can help provide, monetarily or materials, to make this happen - either way, you can make a difference!
We are looking at 3 different Saturdays to serve the Abuse Prevention Council. If you can help on any or all of these days, we would LOVE to work with you!
These days are:
October 20 & 27
Get Ready for a great opportunity to be the hands, feet and heart of Jesus in our community as we serve throughout Shelby, November 16-17. We will feed the hungry, visit the lonely, prepare space for the homeless and love as Jesus does. A variety of projects with a variety of skill needs including all ages will be available for you to choose from… and we want EVERYONE to participate. Because together we are the body of Christ! So set aside one of these days and join God and serve others in God’s name.
Due to high demand we have had to purchase and assemble 40 additional bed kits. Thank you to everyone who has helped support this vital ministry to the children in our community. We had 31 bed kits dispersed during the first half of this year. Fourteen of the new ones have already been passed along to area schools. Each bed kit comes with a copy of the bedtime prayer found below. Please keep these children and families in your prayers.
It is getting to be that time of year when the air gets colder and we are getting out our sweaters and jackets. However, some in our community do not have warmer clothes for the Fall and coming Winter. The Hot Lunch ministry is accepting donations of new or gently used coats, jackets, sweaters, gloves, hats, and blankets. Please bring your items to the church office.
Central’s Trustees are always looking for ways to maintain and improve the wonderful facilities for our members to enjoy and to continue the many ministries we offer. Trustees, along with Staff are also looking for ways our members can be involved and to participate. We are asking for input from the Congregation. We (Trustees) would like to organize several task forces/committees to help. Starting out, we want to put the following in place:
Grounds and Landscape
Currently, Marilyn & Bill Henshaw and Kitty Williams oversee the general Maintenance and care of our landscape. They are rotating off of this committee, but will help with the transition of a new team. New members will oversee a landscape contractor, help schedule needed maintenance and share ideas to enhance our landscape.
Central’s Bereavement Committee provides a beautiful reception for families at a time of loss. Set up is an important part of this reception. A rotating group is needed to assist with set up (placement of tables and chairs in Fellowship Hall) on an “as needed” basis. A call list would be available for the group to work closely with the Bereavement Committee.
Snow and ice removal
Central does not have a set plan when we need snow/ice removal. Central is responsible for the steps and parking lots but our sidewalks must also be addressed in case the City of Shelby isn’t able to treat/remove the snow/ice. Trustees would like to have a call list of folks to help with this ministry when the need arises.
Church office volunteer
Occasionally, volunteers are needed in the office to fill in when our secretary is out of the office for sick days or out of town on vacation. Gina will be holding a training session soon to let volunteers know what they will need to do when serving in this capacity.
The best part of the above is that any and all members at Central can plug in where they feel they can help! If you are on the list for one of the above, it would be on an “as needed” basis. If you are interested in signing up, please contact Gina in the church office or Will Rucker, Trustee Chair.
Thank you for considering this ministry.
Central United Methodist-Shelby Trustees
Happy faces were found at Yo Quiero Ser Orphanage in Honduras when Steve Smith and Jay Wilson delivered the 46 pairs of shoes YOU donated. Thank you to the UMYF for spearheading this campaign and to Steve and Jay for delivering them in person! Check out the write up in the January 25th Newsletter available here.
Local Missions at Central cover a wide range of community services. Support for Hospice and James Love Elementary School are on-going yearly church-wide projects. CUMC also provides facilities for Boy Scout and Girl Scout programs. Each year, two scholarships are given to the Boys and Girls Clubs of Shelby. Our Feed the Hungry hot lunch program provides two full lunches every week including a special Christmas Day feast. Habitat for Humanity and Inter-Faith Alliance Men’s Shelter are served under local missions. Central also holds four blood drives per year. Take a look and see where you might be interested in serving. More information is available by calling 704-487-6336 or emailing [email protected]
The purpose of the Newborn Visitor Committee is to make a visit in the home of babies born to church members. We present a small gift to the child on behalf of the church. In addition, we typically take a gift of food. We offer support to the family and let them know the church is thinking of them during this time.
Central has offered a hot lunch program for the hungry since 1985. The program serves on Tuesdays and Saturdays. Lunch is served between 11:30 and 12:30 pm.
As members of Metrolina Food Bank, most of our food is given to us or purchased at minimal cost. Supplemental items are purchased with donated funds. Advertisements in the church newsletter help us collect other necessities. Kitchen help is always welcome.
Through the generous gifts of our members, Pastor’s Discretionary Funds are made available to assist members and non-members in need in our community. Individuals are not assisted at this location, but through screenings of local agencies such as: United Way, Salvation Army, the Greater Cleveland Baptist Association, Inter- Faith Alliance, Abuse Prevention Center, DSS, and other trusted agencies. These agencies call us with referrals for individuals in need.
We have helped individuals with emergency assistance for medication, utilities and various other needs. We do not help with refundable deposits, bus tickets, motel stays, or short-term fixes that do not help individuals meet long term solutions. Our goal is to represent Christ in our community one individual at a time by being good stewards of these resources given to us to distribute.
Central has teams who respond to natural disasters anywhere in the United States. These teams respond to requests from home owners through their home churches and will travel to these locations and stay in the host church. Because we have a large trailer, we can handle almost any building request. Our team has traveled to disaster sites in North Carolina, Tennessee and Mississippi. Both men and women serve on the disaster team
The Handyman Ministry takes care of small jobs and home repairs for senior members of CUMC who may be unable to perform these jobs safely themselves. Church members furnish all necessary labor and share costs of materials if necessary. Jobs are matched to the volunteers’ skills. A member needing the repair calls the church office and the request is passed along to a team member.
Kairos is an interdenominational ministry designed to be conducted in state and federal correctional institutions. The program is presented in cooperation with the facility chaplain using teams of laity and clergy who are specially trained and certified as “citizen volunteers”. The program is set up for small groups who are encouraged to share, pray and give personal witness. This is a continuing ministry which meets weekly and establishes a strong Christian community within the prison setting. For more information, check out the official website at http://www.kairosnc.org.
Individual members of Central respond annually to building requests in 14 countries. This work involves building churches or building onto church property. Some teams will also repair older or damaged churches. Our WNC conference is one of the most active conferences in the US which offers help to churches in Jamaica, Haiti, the Dominican Republic, Guatemala, Costa Rica, Puerto Rico and other countries. Trips usually last from 10 to 14 days. Skilled or semi-skilled members are led by a WNC conference team leader. The team members must raise their own money.
The Bereavement Ministry of CUMC is composed of seven teams of church women whose purpose is to help and support the bereaved family in the event of the death of one of our church members. These women provide both physical and spiritual nourishment and are available to assist the family in making careful decisions regarding meals and visitation.
Sharing a family meal can be very comforting during a time of grief and our bereavement teams will provide a meal for up to 25 people. The food will be brought to the home of a family member or friend either before or after the service. It will arrive warm and ready to be served and will also include plates, cups, beverages and utensils.
Or, instead of a meal, we offer a reception in the Fellowship Hall of the church. The reception may be held either before or after the funeral or memorial service and is an easy way for the bereaved to visit with their guests. We provide an array of finger foods and punch served in a setting of formal tables with the option of a separate table or two upon which to display memorabilia of loved ones.
Central United Methodist Church as well as the Bereavement Ministry welcome memorials as a way for friends and family members to remember their loved ones. These gifts are blessings for the church and may be designated to the ministry of your choice. In the event that you are undecided, the church office will be happy to guide you in selecting which ministry you wish to be the recipient of your memorials.
Soup Group started in 2016 as a way to expand our ministry to members of Central UMC who are 65 years of age and older. Once or twice a month Soup Group meets in the church kitchen to cook soup and fellowship with each other. Soups are bagged, labeled and frozen for future use. Throughout the month members of Soup Group not only deliver frozen soups but visit with those who may be dealing with stressful situations and/or simply need to feel celebrated and appreciated. It’s a wonderful opportunity to expand our witness as we serve and fellowship with our seniors.
There are many small ways to serve during the week.
Sundays: Be a Greeter Serve in the Nursery—Contact the office 704-487-6336
Wednesday afternoons: Help prepare newsletters for mailing. Contact Gina Blanton at [email protected] or 704-487-6336
Saturdays 10am-1pm: Help setup, serve and clean up at Hot Lunch Ministry in PAC.
Share God's Love with a Student in our Area:
Backpacks for Shelby Middle School Students
Volunteer opportunity: Pack on Mondays, Wednesdays; deliver to the school on Fridays, order/pick up food
Time required: 30 minutes/week
James Love Elementary Tutor
Volunteer opportunity: one on one tutoring for second graders
Time required: one hour/week
Volunteer opportunity: decorate, serve food
Time required: 2 hours/event
Click HERE for more information.
Pray for one of Central's Students: Another great way to participate in the ministry of Central is to partner with one of our many youth in Prayer and Encouragement. We are looking to team up one student with one adult from our congregation to help build cross-generational relationships and to encourage a stronger investment in our church family for both the teen and the adult. If you would be interested in participating in this, please email Nick at [email protected].
A great way to participate in the ministry of Central is to share your love and care with those who are unable to attend each week for various reasons. These individuals would love to hear from their church family: whether it be a phone call, card, or visit. Click here to email the church office and request the Homebound List.
This ministry began in September, 2006 as a means of reaching out to those who are hurting or grieving, those who are facing serious surgeries, those who are experiencing major life changes or end of life issues, and men & women in the military. The ministry has also expanded to include new brides, as well as infants, youth or adults who receive the sacrament of baptism.
Because this is a spiritual practice, before beginning the knitting or crochet process, the Shawl Maker’s Prayer is offered to dedicate the work of the hands and to offer up a prayer for the unknown recipient. Participants are also encouraged to work on their project as part of their daily devotional time. This ministry is currently looking for participants and a coordinator. If you are interested please contact the church office at 704-487-6336.
Central is a praying church. Prayer is a vital part of everything we do. Prayer requests are accepted during Sunday services and other times by contacting the church office. The Prayer Team meets in the Prayer Room on Mondays at 11am.
The Prayer Team and the church staff are honored to lift up prayer requests daily for as long as needed. Prayer requests, except those marked “private”, are then shared with our Prayer Partners.
All prayer requests are kept confidential within our prayer circle. No prayer requests are considered too small or too large. Our God is able!
This ministry is one of the quickest ways to communicate prayer requests to others in the church. The church secretary emails requests (with the exception of private requests) to a designated person in each Sunday School class. This person forwards the request to other class members. If someone does not have email, a phone call is made. There are times when a person wants to keep the request private. At that time, only the staff and Prayer Team are notified. All requests are kept confidential.
Central UMC is also involved in and supportive of many different organizations within our community. We encourage participation in any and every opportunity that fits your gifts, talents and interests. Click here for more information about Habitat, Hospice, Cleveland County Rescue Mission, the Red Cross, and our local schools.