Ministries

First Lutheran LWML (Lutheran Women Missionary League) Society


LWML Sunday 



LWML Sunday – October 4, 2020

THEME:   “The kingdom of God will be … given to a people producing its fruits! (Matthew 21:43)

 

Greeting Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

LWML Sunday was celebrated at First Lutheran on October 4, 2020.  The national, local and international projects selected for 2020 are:

            Jacmel Lutheran Home (Christian Eldercare project in Haiti) - Despite challenging circumstances while in Haiti, the Perry Lutheran Homes and Lutheran Family Service team, together with Ministry in Mission, were able to open and successfully admit the first residents into the Jacmel Lutheran Home in Jacmel, Haiti January 9–16, 2019. The eldercare home was designed to provide care for ten of Jacmel’s most vulnerable elders in need of admission based on inability to walk and lack of a reliable source of food. During assessments, it was common to see these elders laying or sitting on the ground or on concrete inside a small space they called home with little to no belongings, no food and no water. All were in pain, hungry and lonely. Yet surprisingly most were filled with joy, for they felt someone cared about them.

American Cancer Society (ACS) - a nationwide voluntary health organization dedicated to eliminating cancer. Established on May 22, 1913, under the name "American Society for the Control of Cancer" (ASCC). The current name was adopted in 1944.  The society’s global headquarters is located in the American Cancer Society Center in Atlanta, Georgia. The ACS' activities include providing grants to researchers; discovering the link between smoking and cancer; and serving one million callers every year through its National Cancer Information Center.  The organization also runs public health advertising campaigns, and organizes projects such as the Relay For Life and the Great American Smoke-out. It operates a series of thrift stores to raise money for its operations. The ACS participates in the Hopkins 4K for Cancer, a 4000-mile bike ride from Baltimore to San Francisco to raise money for the society's Hope Lodge.

The society's allocation of funds lists 78% of funds for Program Services (Patient Support 36%, Research 19%, Prevention 14%, Detection and Treatment 9%). The remaining 22% are allocated for supporting services (Fundraising 17%, and Management, General administration 5%).  

March of Dimes (UAB Women and Infants) - For over 20 years, the March of Dimes has helped fund various research projects and provided education for both staff and parents at the UAB Women and Infants’ facility.  Its awesome NICU (Neonatal Intensive Care Unit) Family Support Program helps provide food, respite, and social activities for the parents who spend extended periods of time with their child in the NICU.  The March of Dimes plays a huge role in all of the baby units at UAB Medicine.  The annual March for Babies is the NICU’s biggest fundraiser and a major part of its outreach efforts. It provides an opportunity to raise awareness about premature and sick babies, as well as infant loss, helps raise money for the March of Dimes and celebrates the successes of the facility. The money raised during the walk is used for more research projects, outreach programs, and supporting families with babies in the NICU. 

Local School in the Birmingham City School System – The First Lutheran LWML Society will select a school within the Birmingham School System in need of supplies for its students.

 Our success in reaching our mission goals is dependent entirely on your generosity brothers and sisters in Christ.  We hope you will partner with us in meeting these goals.  You play a significant part in our helping to reach out to those in need of our help.

 

After prayerful consideration to this year's mission projects, we pray you will be led to submit a monetary donation to our society either on LWML Sunday or anytime during the year.  By so doing, we will be able to reach our goals and successfully complete our 2020 mission goals.  Because of the pandemic we are unable to have the Fall Harvest fundraiser this year.  And unfortunately, also due to the pandemic, we will not be able to show our appreciation for your generosity with a fellowship lunch.  If you are unable to join us at church please mail your donation to the church. Your support is vital. Thank you in advance for any gift you are able to provide.  May God's continued blessings be with you always.

Love in Christ,

 

Sheree McGraw                               Frances Robinson

President – First LWML Society                                      Vice-President – First LWML Society

First Lutheran Church                                                              First Lutheran Church

 

Since 1942, the LWML has affirmed each woman's identity as a child of God and her relationship with Jesus Christ, encouraged and equipped Christian women t  live out their lives in active service mission ministries, and supported missions around the world through their sacrificial gifts of mites, tithes, offerings, and tireless service.  Now is our time to "Be Ready to Confess!" faithfully and boldly of Christ's redemptive work for us and for all the world.

The Lutheran Women’s Missionary League (LWML) is the official women’s auxiliary of The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod. 

Mission Statement 

The mission of the Lutheran Women's Missionary League is to assist each woman of The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod in affirming her relationship with the Triune God so that she is enabled to use her gifts in ministry to the people of the world.


Lutheran Women's Missionary League 

“… and live a life of love, just as Christ loved us and gave Himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.”... 

First Lutheran LWML 

2021 Officers:

President               Sheree McGraw

Vice-President        Francis Robinson

Secretary               Ernestine Craig

Treasurer               Eva Hill 

 

We celebrated LWML Sunday at First Lutheran on Sunday, October 1, 2017. The theme chosen for this year’s LWML Sunday is “Be Ready to Confess Jesus!”  Lunch was served following our morning worship.

This year marks two significant anniversaries: the 500th Anniversary of Luther's posting of the 95 Theses and the 75th anniversary of the Lutheran Women's Missionary League.  Confessing the faith has not gotten any easier since these two events occurred.  In fact, it may be more difficult to speak and to live as Christians now--and the future may even be ore challenging.  Yet God is faithful and has promised that His church will survive all the trials that the devil, the world, and our own sinful flesh can throw at us.  Building on God's promises, we know that this is our time to be distinctly Lutheran. 

MISSION PROJECTS 2017

"Be Ready to Confess Jesus!"  2 Timothy 4: 1-4

Three projects have been selected for this year. 

     Operation Smile is an international medical charity that provides thousands of free surgeries for children and young adults in developing countries who are born with cleft lip, cleft palate or other facial deformities.  If is one of the oldest and largest volunteer-based organizations dedicated to improving the health and lives of children worldwide through access to surgical care.  

     Since 1982, Operation Smile has developed expertise in mobilizing volunteer medical teams to conduct surgical missions in resource-poor environments while adhering to the highest standards of care and safety.  Operation Smile helps to fill the gap in providing access to safe, well-timed surgeries by partnering with hospitals, governments and ministries of health, training local medical personnel, and donating much-needed supplies and equipment to surgical sites around the world.  Founded and based in Virginia, Operation Smile has extended its global reach to more than 60 countries through its network of credentialed surgeons, pediatricians, doctors, nurses, and student volunteers.  Check here for more information about Operation Smile http://operationsmile.org.

     Aletheia House is a community-based organization that has been providing substance abuse treatment and prevention services to low-income individuals, and the communities in which they live, since 1972.  It is one of Alabama's largest providers of substance abuse treatment, substance abuse/HIV prevention, employment services and affordable housing.  The organization was founded by a group of dedicated volunteers to address the needs of teens who were living on the streets in Birmingham.  Its mission is to empower individuals, and the communities in which they live, with the skills and services they need to be responsible for their own well-being.  Find more about Althea House here https://www.specialkindofcaring.org/.

     Designs for Hope is a non-profit organization that exists to provide sustainable energy, clean water, and other innovative designs to disciple makers in developing countries.  It was begun locally by two engineers, who were also teachers, that wanted to help solve problems with electricity and water that many undeveloped parts of the world experience.  They design products that other ministries can take with them to help improve the lives of the local people when they go to present the gospel.  The ministry itself also makes some trips to these areas and they help with other needs of local missionary groups and provide some theological training for local ministers. They are still looking for volunteer engineers another individuals who would like to assist in their future plans to provide hate tanks and other services to rural villages.  Visit their website for more information https://www.designsforhope.org/.

     Our success in reaching our mission goals is dependent entirely on the generosity of donors, our brothers and sisters in Christ.  We hope you will partner with us in meeting these goals.  There are many worthy needs in this world and we seek to offer assistance to ministries both local, national and international that spread the love of Jesus through their words and deeds.


Mission Projects of 2015

Seek First the Kingdom of God

The First Lutheran LWML Society celebrated the 2015 LWML Sunday on October 4th.  The theme this year was “Seek First the Kingdom of God”.  A wonderful sermon was given by Pastor Lampella. Following worship service, the LWML ladies provided a “Seasons” luncheon for the congregation.  Fun and fellowship was enjoyed by all.

First Lutheran LWML Society continues to support various missions to enable others to receive God’s bountiful blessings.  We have recently sent funds to Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, for the purchase of two donkeys for women to be able to transport goods up and down mountainous terrain. 

Other major mission projects for 2015 are:

Local – Weekenders Backpack Program

First LWML was able to provide 72 backpacks to a local Birmingham school for a child in need.  There are many of our little ones who may not have food to eat when not in school.  In our region, nearly one in every 4 children struggles with hunger while away from school.  The Weekenders Backpack program provides backpacks for 40 weeks of the year, to include some of the extended breaks like Christmas Break, fall break, and spring break.  Each pack contains 5 pounds of food.

National – Wounded Warriors Project

The Wounded Warrior Project® (WWP) serves veterans and service members who incurred a physical or mental injury, illness, or wound, co-incident to their military service on or after September 11, 2001 and their families. On that date, America watched in horror as approximately 3,000 people died including hundreds of firefighters and rescue workers. Many warriors note a sense of duty to volunteer for the military following these tragic events. 

Over 48,000 servicemen and women have been physically injured in the recent military conflicts.  In addition to the physical wounds, it is estimated as many as 400,000 service members live with the invisible wounds of war including combat-related stress, major depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder. Another 320,000 are believed to have experienced a traumatic brain injury while on deployment.

Funds raised for this project will help raise awareness and enlist the public's aid for the needs of injured service members; help injured service members aid and assist each other and  provide unique, direct programs and services to meet the needs of injured service members.

International – Lutheran World Relief Agriculture Initiative

There are 870 million hungry and undernourished people in the world today. By 2050 the world will need to increase its food production by an estimated 50 to 70 percent. To do this, the international community must devote attention and resources to agricultural development and research, including a global push to close the “gender gap.”  To respond to these needs, and driven by their values and mission to end poverty, injustice and human suffering, one of the principles that LWR promotes and adheres to is provide small producers, particularly women, the skills, access to information, and financing to participate as empowered agents in decisions pertaining to agriculture.  Funds raised for this project will go to support this principle.

To be able to support our 2015 mission projects the LWML needs the support of the congregation.  Donations may be submitted to First LWML throughout the month of October.  First LWML is appreciative of the continuing support it has received through the goodness of our family of friends.  Thrivent Financial will match a portion of donations received.  Thanks to everyone for your generosity.

First of all, giving a big shout of thanks to our First Lutheran family!  Because of you and Thrivent matching funds we were able to raise over $4,100 towards our 2012 mission projects: Grandparents Raising Grandkids and Lutheran World Relief Water Initiative.  Thanks for your support and your desire to help others less fortunate than ourselves. 

The Health Ministry Team
  


The Health Ministry Team seeks to improve congregational and community well-being through health through education.  We have worked toward this goal using church newsletter articles, bulletin board displays, and a 5th Sunday potluck Lunch & Learn presentation.  

We also enjoy doing a Christmas-related ministry each year.  Last year, the team collected hygiene items and toys for delivery to children around the world via Operation Christmas Child.  This year our focus is on a local charity.  
  
In 2013, we look forward to continuing educational activities and performing a congregational health ministry assessment.  This assessment will help us determine which health education and/or health screening activities would most benefit to the congregation so that we can design activities to meet those needs long-term.  We always enjoy input and participation from the congregation, so if you have a suggestion, please let us know!

 

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