The Outreach Committee
The Outreach Committee of First Christian has been described as “the hands and feet of Christ” as we strive to reach out beyond the walls of the church into the needs of our community, our state, and beyond. Many of First Christian’s existing and ongoing mission projects fall under the direction of the Outreach Committee. You can find many FCC member volunteers on a regular basis at the following locations:
***Serenity Center (a division of Awake Ministries), 7th Street, preparing and distributing food for their weekly food bank drive-through distribution, held each Wednesday from 12 Noon - 4:00 p.m. for Shelby County residents.
***Open Door of Hope Men’s Shelter (another division of Awake Ministries), 8th Street, preparing a once-monthly meal for the residents of this rehab/recovery program home in Shelbyville. We also provide Christmas gift cards for residents of both the men's and women’s Awake shelters.
***Shelby County Backpack Program (under the direction of Father’s Love Ministries and housed at the Serenity Center), where we have a fun group of dedicated volunteers preparing and packing backpacks at least once monthly. Our church also is a financial and supply supporter of this program which provides weekly backpack weekend food for some 450 Shelby County students in need throughout all SCPS schools including pre-school through high school.
The Outreach focus of FCC also includes the support of and active involvement with several other local and state organizations including Operation Care, Habitat for Humanity, Shelby County Salvation Army’s Angel Tree program, and Christmas Kettle bellringing. We value our relationship with and support of the Centro Latino organization here in Shelbyville. For several years, we have also been blessed to support the Readyfest school supply event for SCPS students, providing markers and used clothing, as well as volunteers, for that annual event. This year that event served some 1100 students. Another meaningful event we have been pleased to support in recent years is the ‘Touched Twice Clinic’, which provides medical, spiritual, and material assistance to those in need.
This year, the Outreach Committee has just recently committed to become a sponsoring organization for one of the Veteran Village homes constructed by Veterans Rural Outreach on Bradshaw Street in Shelbyville. We are excited to partner with VRO and the work they are doing to support struggling veterans right here in Shelbyville and hope to become more involved with some of their weekly Thursday evening gatherings in the future.
Reaching out beyond Shelby County, FCC has teamed up with other churches to sponsor two different refugee families in recent years under the leadership of Kentucky Refugee Ministries. In 2018, we sponsored a family of eight into the Louisville area from Myanmar (Burma). And in 2022, we settled a young, single expectant Congolese mother of three with KRM in Louisville. Our church is also a collection spot for used shoes for the ‘Water Step’ Project.
We are most pleased to be resuming our visits to the Diersen Center in Louisville in October 2023, after not being able to go there during the Covid shutdowns. Mission Behind Bars and New Life Christian Church provide involvement opportunities for our church to attend worship services with incarcerated women nearing release at the Diersen Center. We feel blessed to share God’s love and hope with these women.
Excitement is building currently as we prepare for our upcoming mission trip to Eastern Kentucky, Sept. 24-29th, 2023, with Christian Appalachian Project (CAP). This will be our second trip to this devastated area of our state, working with CAP to restore and rebuild homes, many of which were destroyed in the extreme flooding of recent years. Our first trip was in 2019 with 6 volunteers. We are taking 9 volunteers this year! There are many levels of skills welcomed, including “very little skill, but big hearts of compassion.” Come join our mission team.
In addition, Outreach continuously encourages the support of the Week of Compassion (Disciples of Christ) special offerings throughout the year, as well as their disaster and emergency efforts through all parts of the United States and the world. FCC is pleased to be one of the top contributing congregations in the state. In recent years, we had very successful ‘Matching Funds’ appeals for Week of Compassion from our congregation for hurricane disaster relief funding in Haiti, as well as for the Kentucky tornadoes and Eastern Kentucky flooding (CAP). The generosity of the First Christian Church is beyond measure, in countless forms.
If your heart leads you to be involved with any one of the many ways, we reach outside our church walls into our community and beyond in Christian love and compassion, we welcome you to join our Outreach Committee. Also, if you see ways or needs you feel Outreach should be aware of, please bring it to our attention. Kim Arrington chairs the Outreach Committee, and we plan to meet on the fourth Tuesday of each month at the church at 6:30 p.m. (the September meeting only will be Tuesday, Sept. 19th due to the CAP Mission trip schedule).
Outreach opportunities in the community
(includes Serenity Center, Open Door of Hope Men's Shelter & A Place to Sleep)
Habitat for Humanity:
Shelby Touched Twice Clinic:
Denominational and Area Ministries
Christian Appalachian Project:
Christian Care Communities:
Disciples Mission Fund:
Kentucky Refugee Ministry:
Mission Behind Bars and Beyond:
Week of Compassion: