Middleton Finds Opportunities for Evangelism
As with most small congregations, the availability of resources for community service activities such as food boxes, clothing for the needy, cash for other needs, etc., is often limited. When the Middleton Church’s Community Services fund reached a low of $14.58 early last year, the director and the board decided a yard/bake sale could be a viable source for adding to the fund.
A date in April was chosen, and the call went out for used goods and clothing and quite a large amount was received — so much so that an unused room became packed to full. Several members came to help set up the day before, and baked goods came fresh on the morning of the sale.
Since a yard sale had not been done at the church for a while and not inside, we weren’t sure there would be much participation from the community. Much to our surprise, there was a very good response, and more than $1,200 was garnered from the two-day sale.
Because there was so much good merchandise left, we decided to have another sale in June to benefit the evangelism fund. That one didn’t result in as many shoppers — the street north of the church was blocked for construction, and traffic was very light despite the signs at Highway 44 and notices on Facebook and Craigslist. Another sale was held in October to try and liquidate the remaining items. At the end of that sale, the leftovers were donated to the Middleton Foodbank for the ongoing fundraiser that organization has.
While fundraising for community service is a good cause, a great opportunity for evangelism was realized. The rack from the foyer with leaflets was brought into the fellowship hall and placed by the cashier. A table was laid with free books such as The Great Controversy, Steps to Christ, The Great Hope and more, including both English and Spanish versions. Coloring books from 3ABN (Three Angels Broadcasting Network) were available for the children. The members working the sale were asked questions about Seventh-day Adventists, so there were many chances to express to people what we believe and invite them to church.
Another way Community Services shares the gospel is by including literature in the food boxes distributed to needy families throughout the year.
The sale for this year is scheduled for May 4, and we look forward to sharing our faith and our good bargains again with our neighbors.
Lynne Lent, Middleton Church Community Services director, Leroy Cortez, Middleton Church Community Services assistant