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Beyond the Walls

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P6070023As we set up on Sabbath, June 7, for the clothing drive at Ridgecrest Elementary School, I wondered if our supplies would be enough for the families that were coming.  I watched in anticipation as our volunteers folded and organized the women's clothes, the men's clothes, baby clothes, shoes, toys, toiletries, bread, food, etc.

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omaris-groupOn Sabbath June 7, I was the team lead for a small group of volunteers who participated in the Beyond the Walls “Clean Up Hyattsville” outreach activity.  It first appeared that our activity was going to be a wash, because when we got to Huerich Park, our assigned location, we couldn’t find the park ranger.  We were supposed to meet her to get our cleaning supplies (gloves, bags, etc.).  What to do?  We “radioed” back in to “headquarters” (Melissa and Vonric) for support, but while we were waiting on them to track down the ranger, we decided that we would complete this outreach on our own!  If we couldn’t find supplies, we would get our own supplies.

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I love to cook; especially when I know there are epicures ready to taste and eat!!

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prayer-and-fastingSabbath April 5 was a memorable day of good deeds, songs, prayer and praise, as we gathered with a special sense of purpose. While most of Metro's members went out to serve the community as part of our special project called "Beyond the Walls”, a small group of worshipers remained at the church in fasting and prayer. The songs "Bringing in the Sheaves" and "Seeking the Lost" took on an extra special meaning.

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metrokidzThrough the Beyond the Walls effort  on April 5, I was blessed with the opportunity to minister with the Children's Church team led by Tamara Sam.  When the children arrived at the MAC, they were assigned to different workstations to create beautiful handmade cards for the residents of Chillum Oaks Senior Living Center.  After simple instructions, the children quickly slipped into creative mode and out came the glitter, glue, stickers, markers and paper!  They were all very intentional about making sure their masterpieces displayed beautiful images and encouraging words.  

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On April 5, we were blessed to have the opportunity to serve many in the community through our Beyond the Walls outreach.  Among those served were some of our members who have mobility challenges.  This project was led by Elder Cunningham who divided us into three teams.  Each team had approximately five members and we were assigned 2 visits.  One of the members I visited lives at an assisted living facility; the other we visited at her residence.

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food-line3On April 5, I particiated in Metro's community-wide service day titled “Beyond the Walls”.  The day took a break from traditional church service, within the walls of the divine sanctuary, and stepped out into the community to truly exhibit God’s hands and feet. Of the several activities that took place in Washington, DC and the Hyattsville area, I served at the homeless feeding in Franklin Square Park.

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tn RMH Pic 2On Sabbath, April 5, more than ten eager individuals made sack lunches for the families of Ronald McDonald House as a part of Metropolitan’s first Beyond the Walls outreach day.  Ronald McDonald House serves as a “home-away-from-home” for the parents of hospitalized children. Parents are able to stay at the House for little or no cost, and have access to private bedrooms, home-cooked meals, and an array of support services.

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I was excited to get involved in our April 5 outreach program - Beyond the Walls - and I chose to work with the Random Acts of Kindness group.  There were about 19 people in the group I was assigned to, and we further separated in smaller groups.  My "groupmates" were Samantha Warren and Yolande (Ricque) Sinclair.  We worked at one of the traffic lights near the Prince George's mall.  When the traffic light turned red, we walked to the stopped cars and said, "We are from the Metropolitan Seventh-day Adventist Church and we are here to just share a little love.  Would you like a bottle of water or granola bar or lollipops for the kids?"

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food-and-friendsApproximately 20 Metro worshippers got the great opportunity to be a part of Food and Friends during our first Beyond the Walls outreach activity on April 5 - delivering roughly 48 to 60 hot meals and groceries in the DC area. Food and Friends started in 1988 in the basement of a church - it was the brainchild of a few people who wanted to help deliver meals to the homes of 60 clients with HIV. Twenty-five years later it has grown to be an organization that delivers meals and groceries, and gives nutritional counseling for those with HIV/AIDs, cancer, AMS and other illnesses. More than 2,800 people in the DC and Maryland areas are serviced from its state of the art kitchen and pantry facility.

It was exciting to be a part of this experience in sharing God's love and doing the will of our father in feeding the hungry. Some of our group members decided they would continue to volunteer their services with Food and Friends and be God's hands and feet. In the words of Matthew West's song, "If not us then who? If not me and you, right now.  It's time for us to do something. If not now, then when will we see an end to all this pain.  It's not enough to do nothing. It's time for us to do something." Metro, Let's GO!!!

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