Your generosity helps spark faith in our kids from toddlers to high school. We are committed to teaching our kids about God's unconditional love for them and Jesus' call to love the neighbor. Offerings purchase bibles, curriculum, and materials for Sunday School and Confirmation class. In 2023, your donations allowed us to revamp our Sunday School space by adding bookshelves and a giant storytelling rug to better align with our Godly Play method of teaching the bible to our kids. It looks fantastic! Beginning in 2022, your giving grew and has sustained a new high school ministry called Holy Grounds where students gather on Monday mornings with Pastor Sean and Kelly to talk about faith.
Worship is central to our community of faith. Offerings support creative and engaging worship for adults and kids with the purchase of music, materials and supporting staff who plan and lead worship. This year, we welcomed a new Music Minster who directs a vocal choir and brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to music planning. Many of our students are musicians and worship provides a welcome place to grow in their musical gifts.
Your contributions enable us to maintain our building. But it goes farther than that. For many, our building is a place of healing and support. Every weeknight, Monday through Friday, support groups like Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous meet in the library. Our building is the home of the Joy Child Development Center - a beloved and well-known fixture in our community that cares for over 40 families in our area. Further, our building is a community gathering space for Boy Scouts, local youth music choirs and ensembles, neighborhood associations, quilting groups, and more! In a time when our society seems more and more fractured, we use our building as a ministry tool for community-building, healing, and support.
In 2023, a few members formed the Jump for Joy Kids Clothes Closet which offers free kids clothes to families in need. The congregation and JCDC parents contributed enough clothing donations to open the closet. In just a few months, we have served over 25 different families in our community.
Every year, a portion of the money you give is forwarded to the Alaska Synod and the churchwide expression of the ELCA. With siblings in Christ from across our denomination, these funds help train future pastors and deacons, military and federal chaplains, grow new and diverse mission start congregations across the ELCA, advocate for the hungry and marginalized, lead the way in interfaith dialogues, and support social ministry organizations such as Lutheran Social Services who touch the lives of 1 in 50 Americans!
In December 2022, we donated nearly $1000 of our Christmas Eve offering to Choosing Our Roots in Anchorage - a non-profit organization that supports housing for homeless LGBTQIA+ youth.