Reaching out to our community is central to our Christian life here at ECA. We help feed the homeless, knit scarves for foster kids and sponsor young people in war-torn Sudan. Getting involved is easy. We always welcome new volunteers eager to grow by serving others. The rewards of service are immeasurable. Come serve with us! For information on all outreach activities or to volunteer contact the Rev. Kate Flexer: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Every other Friday ECA members gather with others in the community to prepare and serve meals for the homeless at the Montgomery Street men’s shelter in downtown San Jose. We serve more than 3,000 meals each year!
All are invited to join this vital program, which started 25 years ago when a few ECA parishioners began distributing sandwiches in downtown San Jose’s St. James Park. Every other Friday afternoon we gather in the ECA kitchen to prepare cooked meals, which are taken to the shelter and served by volunteers shortly after 5:00 p.m. We are always happy to welcome more cooks, drivers and servers. Come join us!
Each year ECA also organizes a Thanksgiving Turkey Drive to benefit Montgomery Meals. Church members cook enough turkey to supply the shelter for an entire year. Church members prepare the turkeys in their ovens at home then bring the cooked turkeys to church, where they are cut up and divided into containers to be frozen for future use. The Turkey Drive is a fun and enriching way to show thanks for our own blessings and to share those blessings with those less fortunate.
Calling All Knitters
Please join us at church on the second and fourth Saturdays of each month at 10:00 a.m. to knit for those in need. ECA Knit Wits work on all sorts of projects together. In the past we’ve made afghans for Ronald McDonald House, hats for the Baby Love ministry and scarves and blankets for foster children. We are a warm and welcoming group. Come with your knitting, crochet or needlework and get ready to enjoy a big pot of strong tea and maybe some scones. We look forward to seeing you Saturday morning!
Santa Maria Urban Ministry
Santa Maria Urban Ministry is an outreach ministry of the Episcopal Diocese of El Camino Real. Founded in April 1983, this ministry provides many services to the residents of San Jose’s inner city, meeting needs regardless of race, creed or religion. The ministry began thanks to the vision of ECA member Diane Conrad, who obtained the initial grants to start the ministry and went on to run this important outreach for many years.
ECA members volunteer at the ministry and generously supported the purchase of the ministry’s current home on South Almaden Avenue near downtown San Jose. The ministry, one block from an elementary school, provides clothing, food, after-school programs, preschool classes and tax assistance to residents in the surrounding community.
Sudanese Youth Opportunity
Sudanese Youth Opportunity is a ministry of ECA and St. Stephen’s-in-the-Field, San Jose. SYO supports Sudanese orphans attending boarding schools in Kapenguria, Kenya: 22 students at Sunflower Junior Academy and one student at Sunflower Secondary School. We also have four students attending day school at Sportsview Academy in Nairobi. Peter Nyok (one of the original Lost Boys of Sudan) rescued these children from South Sudan before that war-torn region became a country in its own right. The students are adjusting to a different culture and are learning languages, math, science, history and religion. Sponsors from ECA, from St. Stephen’s and from other sources are providing these children with a valuable education, uniforms, food and supplies they need to learn. Currently Peter Nyok is living and working in Oklahoma and is planning to return to South Sudan to start a business and to be with his wife and daughter. We are in close touch with him.
Sandie Mueller from ECA, Carol Pecora from St. Stephen’s-in-the-Field and Joy Austin-Lane from St. Francis, Willow Glen are the coordinators of SYO. We get student photos to our sponsors and send news from the heads of school, Dr. Nilsson in Kapenguria and Jacob Nyok in Nairobi. Our goal is to prepare these young people to return as educated citizens to their new country of South Sudan.
Please think about becoming a full or partial sponsor. Peter Nyok has just found four more students and we will need sponsors for each one. You can also make contributions to help with textbooks, school supplies, uniforms, shoes and mosquito nets. Go to our website, www.sudaneseyouthopportunity.org, to learn more.