Mission & Outreach
Christ First is working hard to be a “missional church,” a church reaching out to anyone in need and everyone desiring to hear the Good News. Our understanding of “Missions” is taking The Good News to others, wherever they might be. Our understanding of “Outreach” is helping those in need. Both are very Biblical but separate concepts. However, we believe Mission without Outreach can be stagnant and that Outreach should contain Mission whenever possible. Using Jesus’ instructions to His disciples in Acts 1:8 as our guide, we are attempting to obtain a balance of reaching out in His name to our own immediate area (Jerusalem), our state and country (Judea), places we really don’t want to go (Samaria) and all the world. We are attempting to make our church building into a “base camp” where we warmly invite people in, connect them to the Gospel, help them become disciples and then send them out into the world to serve in His name. The key word is “GO”. Go into your own home, go into your community, go into your workplace and school, go to your shopping center, go into your civic and recreational organizations always living and demonstrating the Love of Jesus.
Our “menu” of mission and outreach opportunities is extensive and varied in an attempt to help all our members find a niche that touches them. Our LOCAL EFFORTS include supporting and partnering with local relief agencies such as:
♥ The Department of Social Services...by providing “We Care Kits” (new backpacks with school supplies, toiletries, a stuffed animal and a fleece blanket) to Child Protective Services to give to children when they have to be removed from a home
♥ The Western NY Food Bank through the Northside Food Pantry located in our building and staffed by Christ First Volunteers
♥ We visit and sometimes entertain people in care facilities.
♥ We own and operate a short term residence for people in transition.
♥ We have a ‘work team’ ministry providing help with essential and emergency home maintenance and repairs as well as building wheelchair ramps.
♥ At this time while continuing to help provide relief for people in need, we are attempting to create opportunities for life transformation through the healing word of Jesus Christ.
National Efforts include:
♥ Disaster Response Teams
♥ Disaster Recovery Teams
♥ Short Term Mission Trips
International Efforts include:
♥ Short Term Mission Trips
♥ Support of a clinic, orphanage and school in Croix de Bouquet and Gallette, Haiti
♥ Support for our sister church in San Jose, Cuba
♥ Support for AIDS outreach program at the central City Mission in Durban, South Africa.
♥ As a member of a powerful, worldwide denomination, The United Methodist Church, we give generously to the United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR) as they touch so many lives around the world. We also give to United Methodist Advanced Specials designated to help specific missions and missionaries. We support UNICEF and Heifer Project.
In 2003, in an attempt to concentrate more on reaching outside our walls of the church building, Christ First hired a part time staff person as the Coordinator of Missions and Outreach. Charlie Hodges has served nine years now in an attempt to help us grow as a church who cares about everyone. Christ First members have enthusiastically grown in their desire to reach out in Jesus’ name to our neighbors everywhere as Charlie continues to help provide opportunities to do so. We often work with and travel with people from other denominations as well as with seekers and non-church goers. We cordially and heartily invite you to contact Charlie if you feel called to participate in any of our activities or to let us know about a need.
Charlie Hodges | 716-969-6407 | 716-664-5803