Missions & Social Responsibility Commission for the 21st Century (MSRC)

Together we can change the World. Be. Go. Do

On Sunday, May 17, our church will be observing its seventh Change the World Sunday. In today’s world filled with fear, worry, poverty, crime and corruption, it’s especially important to get involved and help to make a difference. Change the World Sunday is a world-wide event which seems to be gaining momentum. Congregations leave their pews, put on their work clothes and go out to share Christ’s love. Following a brief worship service at 9:30 am, participants will head out into the community to help others and then return for a delicious lunch and fellowship at Noon. This year’s projects include: constructing tables/benches for St. Paul’s Women’s and Children’s Shelter in Rensselaer, visiting our Veterans at the VA Center in Albany, preparing gifts for residents of Riverside Nursing Home in Castleton, preparing potted plants for residents of Rosewood Rehabilitation Center in East Greenbush, hosting a Moon Bee, where participants make and assemble sanitary napkin kits for girls who have limited access to such products, making coloring books, 3D animals and craft kits for children at St. Jude’s and Albany Med, going to the Ronald McDonald House in Albany to make baked goods and snacks for patients, visiting the elderly and shut-ins, and preparing lunch for all of our volunteers. You are also welcome to plan your own project by reaching out in some other way to someone who needs to experience Christ’s love. We certainly have something for everyone this year!

All are welcome to join us as we continue to Change the World! Bring a friend. We look forward to seeing you.

“Not all of us can do great things. But we can all do small things with great love.” Mother Teresa

Church World Service and the Crop Hunger Walk

Each year, a dozen or more children and adults from our community join the Castleton Crop Hunger Walk, held the third Sunday in October. Walkers solicit pledges prior to the event and then join others from our community and other churches on the 3.2 mile walk through Castleton-on-Hudson. Twenty-five percent of the money that is raised goes to The Anchor Food Pantry. The rest funds Church World Service (CWS) development projects to provide food security, clean water sources and increase the earning potential of women in developing communities.

Hunger kills more people every year than AIDS, malaria and tuberculosis combined.

Walkers from FUMC, Reformed and Luthern Churces of Castleton



blanket on rocking chair
Matemoko Chenene

Our Missions Ministry Team welcomes its newest scholarship recipient, Matemoko Chenene! Matemoko, 18, attends the Qholaqhoe High School in Lesotho, southern Africa. In a recent letter, she expressed her gratitude to our church for her scholarship. She has a younger brother and sister whom she helps care for. With no transportation available, Matemoko walks to school, leaving home at 6 AM, and returns home at 5:30 PM. She wants to become a nurse “to help people with different sicknesses”. Her favorite subject (one of the least favorite of American students) is English. She loves singing in the school choir. We are happy to be able to provide assistance to Matemoko and ask for your prayers of support for her and her family

Thapelo Malakoane

Our church is now supporting eight high school students with scholarships at Qholaqhoe High School.  Lynn was able to get them together during her visit for a group picture. 

8 students from Quolaqhoe High School


Joseph's House and Shelter

Kevin Connelly and Janet Schmidt volunteering in kitchen at Joseph's House and Shellter

Three or four times a year, our community prepares and serves dinner for Joseph's House and Shelter in Troy. Joseph's House provides a continuum of homeless services to residents of Rensselaer County, including emergency shelter, street outreach, and support services. Ordinarily, dinner is planned for 50 adults and children, but when temperatures drop below freezing, we plan for 90 persons. This is the Code Blue period when the shelter expands its capacity to accommodate street-homeless persons who are brought in out of the cold for overnight stay. Church members pitch in to prepare dinner after the Sunday morning service and serve it on Sunday evening. Rather than deliver the meal to the shelter, we serve the meal ourselves and join residents at the dining table. Our intention is to make a connection with - and see Christ in - those who are experiencing homelessness. Please consider joining us as we prepare a meal on the morning of Sunday, June 30.  Contact Kevin Conley for more information at e.kevin.conley@gmail.com (518) 253-4907.



Missionary Mozart Makafui Adevu of Accra, Ghana, West Africa

The missionary we have selected for a special relationship with our church is Mozart Makafui Adevu of Accra, Ghana, West Africa. Contact has been made with him and we have received past newsletters and information about his ministry in agriculture methods, livestock management and disease control. The area in which Missionary Adevu works as regional coordinator includes Sierra Leone, from which our past missionary (now Bishop) Rev. John Yambasu comes. In addition to the specific information about Missionary Adevu’s work, we have had the opportunity to learn about the political and cultural issues in the region.

Missionary Adevu’s ministry is through the United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR). In lieu of a covenant relationship, we have chosen to support him through the UMCOR-Sustainable Agriculture and Development Advance.

If you would like to know more, please ask any member of the Missions and Social Responsibilities Ministry.

Missionaries witness and serve in different locales and cultures and engage in a range of professions and activities. They are a tangible connection between the church and mission. These commissioned individuals are usually called to serve outside their country of origin, as pastors, teachers, doctors, nurses (or in other healing ministries), social workers, church planters, evangelists, and in a variety of other ways through denominational or ecumenical ministries.