3371 Chattanooga Valley Road Flintstone GA 30725 706.820.2833

3371 Chattanooga Valley Road Flintstone GA 30725 706.820.2833

Monday, October 26, 2009

Jobs for Life at CVPC this Spring

Jobs for Life classes will be held at Chattanooga Valley Presbyterian Church in Flintstone, Georgia starting this January. The first class will be held on Monday, January 4th. Classes will run on Mondays from 7:00 - 9:00 pm through the beginning of May.

If you or someone you know might be interested in participating in the class, you can download the application here but do not mail it to Greensboro (as is stated at the bottom of the last page of the document). Instead, email or mail it to the Hope office.

Positions for volunteers are still available. Please contact the Hope office for more information.

Friday, October 16, 2009

The Characterists of a Deacon

What does it take to be a great deacon? Check out 1 Timothy 3:8-13. The Bible gives us a wonderful picture of the kind of person suited to fill this role.
Because Hope does not seek to replace the work of the church -and the work of deacons, more specifically- we often work closely with the Diaconate of our participating congregations. It is a privilege to work with men who are so willing to give themselves to this work! Although it is important that the church grounds are cared for -since we are commanded to be good stewards of all the Lord has given- how much more then, are we called to care for the needy who live next-door?
This is a daunting task, especially if a deacon has always thought of their job as being custodial and nothing more. Ministering to the poor can seem like an "add-on" -but it's not! Diaconal Ministries Canada has a fantastic website with very helpful resources for deacons. Their motto is "transforming communities for Christ," and if that doesn't sound exciting, I don't know what does! This site has helpful tools like FAQs deacons might find helpful in understanding their roles, as well as workshops and workbooks. Their Guidelines for Benevolence has been extremely helpful to our work at Hope. This document is helpful in creating specific guidelines for a church's mercy ministry policies. By creating limits to the kind of help a church provides as well as a rationale for why the church does/does not do what it does, a church can minister more effectively to the needy in it's community -without doing harm!

Check out this website. Even if you are not on your churches Diaconate, it may help you to understand the importance of demonstrating mercy thoughtfully, carefully, and prayfully.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Welfare: a brief history

At the Hope offices this morning, the topic of Welfare came up in conversation. I found myself wanting to know more about it, and other types of government aid. What kinds of aid are out there? Who gets what, and what are the limits? If one of our participants gets employment, is this going to be more helpful or harmful in the long run?

I never thought that I might say that work might be bad. -not that I am saying this still- However, it is not as clean cut a thing as to be able to say work=better. Unfortunately, society and those structures in which we all live do not support such statements. I do believe, as a Christian, that work is good. In doing work, we are imitating our maker. We are creating, making new, pressing on, to bring him glory through the work of our hands and minds. The Bible tells us in Genesis 2:15, God "took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it." And in Genesis 3:23, after the fall, God still says that man will work. I could, of course, go on and on, because the Bible is full of passages on work. In Proverbs, again and again, we see that man should work for his food, labor with his hands- and that idleness is not to be rewarded. For the sake of brevity, I'll just say this: Work is good!

But what happens in a world that does not run in accordance with the Scriptures? What happens when the rulers and powers that be do not see the poor as image bearers? Even if their intentions are good, it is possible to do harm -great harm- by attempting to "fix" by the standards of the world.

Take a moment to read through the following link on the history of welfare. As you read, think about what God has to say about work and about poverty.

Who is responsible for the poor?

When is it good/bad for a man to work?

Why do we work?

How can the church act on behalf of the poor?


Please feel free to email us here at the Hope office with any comments or questions on this particular issue, or anything else that comes to mind.