Since September 2009, the Madisonville District has actively embraced the growing partnership with the Red Bird Missionary Conference. One goal of the District is to have “feet on the ground” in Red Bird at least once each month during the coming year. We are praying for the pastors and churches, collectively and individually asking for God’s blessings and grace. The District Mission Team has been busy in efforts to encourage participation districtwide. Their work through clusters was very effective during charge conferences.
Churches are responding to the call in various ways. Obviously, the easiest would be sending money and getting someone else to do the work. Our churches have done that, but they also collected Christmas gifts for the children of the Red Bird Mission and then personally delivered them. Six different churches were involved in these Christmas donations. One church had a “Muffins for Missions” sale and collected money to assist a work team from their church who went to Red Bird and repaired homes. Our District is divided into six “Clusters for Ministry.” At the cluster worship service of each, the video overview was shown and an offering was taken for Red Bird. A few of our churches have added monthly commitments to Henderson Settlement and/or Red Bird Clinic into their annual budgets.
Madisonville District United Methodist Women sent 607 UPC labels and 191 General Mills box tops to Red Bird (it takes a million to get a bus). Individuals and churches may also have responded in ways we do not know about.
At the District Christmas Dinner, the “Preachers’ Kids” prepared Christmas cards that were mailed (by a local church) to the clergy families of the Red Bird Conference.
Churches and individuals continue to be creative in ways to help. On February 13, 2010, the Oakland and Linton churches are conducting a Fundraiser for Red Bird. They are serving a Valentine meal with all proceeds going to the Henderson Settlement. One church is sending an advance planning team to Red Bird to organize a work team visit for the summer. Folks are praying and talking about possibilities of joining with other districts to build a home for a family. People are already volunteering to help.
God is calling us to share his love with our brothers and sisters of Red Bird. He continues to lead us in these efforts. May our hearts and minds be open to his direction.
For further information, contact Brenda Glover, Madisonville District Director of Leadership and Discipleship Formation, at 270-871-0982.