A member of Grace Point Baptist Church has held a burden for a local community, Ruskin Heights, for years.
This district hosts many vulnerable families, and is generally a low-income, high crime rate area. In his prayer walks with a team he gathered throughout the community, he got connected to a church within the neighborhood, Bethel Family Worship Center. He discovered the pastor really had a heart for the community and being activated in outreach. Our churches shortly bonded over our mutual desire to take the church outside the building and began doing evangelism together.
During the early onset of Covid, Pastor Lester saw a great fear in the community, and a greater need for practical items since people were told to stay home, which lessened their income all the more. Soon he and Pastor Athol Barnes began to collaborate on what this could look like and it took off! They gathered partners including Grace Point Baptist Church, Caring For Kids, Team Extreme, Police Officers and other local churches to share the vision of teaming up to provide items such as shampoo, soap, masks, socks, etc. to the community. We aimed for serving 1,500 people and ended up with more than enough.
Understanding that our present circumstances of being shut down would not likely let up soon, we knew we needed to come up with a plan for Christmas. More churches, law enforcement and organizations joined this time around. Though we all came from different backgrounds, we had one mission in mind: To show Christ’s love and provision in a practical way to the community, while also meeting the spiritual deficit through prayer and sharing the Gospel.
This time we believed the Lord for greater provision and aimed to reach around 4,000 people. Everyone went to work getting their churches involved in raising finances or items for this event. We gathered toys, hats, gloves, sanitizer, blankets, masks and even had food donation through Harvesters. We saw miracle after miracle of the Lord’s provision where we had no idea how we were going to meet the demand as registrations poured in.
In the end we served around six hundred families, including those of volunteers. And there is more to come. Pastor Lester from Bethel Family Worship Center is the main contact for the Because We Care events. If you or your church would like to be involved in future outreaches, you can reach him at [email protected].