Windham Area Interfaith Ministry (WAIM)
The commitment of WAIM is the free redistribution of clothing, household goods and furniture to people who need them. Donors come from one of the 39 faith communities-at large, supplying WAIM with items they no longer use. WAIM is a volunteer driven organization that serves about 7,500 people a year via basic services and special programs. They have expanded into the provision of energy assistance and administering funds to prevent homelessness.
We support WAIM during the year by holding spaghetti suppers, a youth group rock-a-thon, special collections and group workdays.
Covenant Soup Kitchen
Columbia Congregational Church supports the Covenant Soup Kitchen through weekly food collections and monthly visits to help prepare and serve meals. Special events like the CWS CROP Walk and Souper Bowl help with monetary donations.
Cardless Holiday Fund/Emergency Assistance Fund
Columbia Congregational Church collects for the Emergency Assistance Fund through a community fundraiser and distributes funds to local families in need of emergency assistance. Money is raised during the month of November for use when needed. Questions should be directed to the Columbia Congregational Church office.
Souper Bowl of Caring
Transforming Super Bowl weekend into the nation’s largest youth-led weekend of giving and serving.
On Super Bowl Sunday, our youth join young people in churches across the country to collect money for those who are hungry and hurting. Money collected is donated to a local charity.
Assist the local chapter of The Salvation Army with the collection and distribution of goods for holiday baskets for Easter, Thanksgiving and Christmas.
Back Bay Mission Work Camp
Back Bay Mission is a community ministry of the United Church of Christ and serves the Mississippi Gulf Coast. The agency is a member of the Health and Human Services Ministry. The Columbia Congregational Church has donated to Back Bay Mission for over thirty years and our first mission trip will be in February 2010. We will be helping with the recovery efforts after hurricane Katrina. We are very excited and plan more mission work groups in the future.
United Church of Christ
Our Church’s Wider Mission – Basic Support
Our Church’s Wider Mission Basic Support provides funding for the work of UCC Conferences and for the work of the UCC’s national ministries. Each congregation decides how much of its members’ financial support it will contribute to Our Church’s Wider Mission Basic Support. Congregations send their OCWM gifts to the Conference. Each Conference decides what percentage of those gifts to keep for the work of that particular Conference, and what percentage it will send to the national setting of the UCC. Some of the National Basic Support money is used for ministries to Conferences, local churches and members, as well as for ecumenical, prophetic and missionary ministries on behalf of the UCC. Contributions from individuals to their congregations comprise the funds from which OCWM Basic Support is given to the Conferences and national ministries. Local churches can help individuals understand the mission and work of the denomination.
Our Church’s Wider Mission – Special Mission Offerings
Our Church’s Wider Mission Special Support comprises gifts to the four Special Mission Offerings in the United Church of Christ, per capita dues, and gifts that are specially designated for the Conference, national setting or UCC-related institutions. By mandate of the General Synod, each local church receives promotional material for the four Special Mission Offerings:
One Great Hour of Sharing
Giving Help, Hope and Life Supports partners in more than 70 countries with ministries that fund development projects, feed the victims of famine, provide services for displaced people, and respond to natural disasters. These ministries are the responsibility of Wider Church Ministries, Global Sharing of Resources. Received annually on the fourth Sunday in Lent.
The Christmas Fund
Remembering Those Who Serve Our Church Provides financial aid to retired and active ministers and their surviving spouses and children who face overwhelming financial demands, a ministry carried out by the Pension Boards. Received annually on the Sunday before Christmas.
Neighbors in Need
Justice and Compassion Like a Mighty Stream Supports ministries of justice and compassion throughout the United States and Puerto Rico, including ministry carried out by the Council for American Indian Ministries (CAIM) and by the national offices of Justice and Witness Ministries. Received annually on World Communion Sunday, the first Sunday of October.
Strengthen the Church
Faithfully Building the Body of Christ Supports church growth and leadership development in the conferences and through the national offices of Local Church Ministries. Received annually on Pentecost Sunday.
Church World Service
Church World Service works with partners to eradicate hunger and poverty and to promote peace and justice around the world.
Columbia Congregational Church participates in many programs throughout the year to support Church World Service including; CROP Hunger Walks, the Blankets + program and School and Hygiene Kits.
Our church school supports Heifer International by working to fill an Ark (bank) by collecting money and by holding bake sales and other miscellaneous fund raisers.
Funds are used to buy animals and provide training to help families improve their nutrition and generate income in sustainable ways. This gift is passed on through the giving of animal offspring to another family within the community thereby empowering impoverished communities to become self reliant and independent.
The Bread Box
The Bread Box is a group of individuals committed to fighting hunger in our local community by providing a folk music venue to raise money for the Covenant Soup Kitchen in Willimantic. They schedule an event every third Weds.