Christmas Eve Offering
The season of Advent is an opportunity for reflection on the birth of our Savior, Jesus Christ. As we celebrate the coming of his birth on Christmas Eve, we recognize the ways God has worked in and through our lives and our community. Each year, we use the Christmas Eve Offering to bless our community and our world. The offering each year allows our generosity to be a blessing to vulnerable people and reminds us of our responsibility to love our neighbors as we love ourselves.
The Christmas Eve Offering in 2016 was one of the largest offerings we’ve witnessed at Floris UMC and Restoration. An astounding $278,610 was collected to support the following partners and ministries: Helping Children Worldwide, Cornerstones, Celebrate Recovery and the Pastor’s Discretionary Fund.
In 2017, we have identified areas where these funds will be used to advance the amazing work of ministries and partners seeking to build a better future for families, individuals and communities. The 2017 Christmas Eve Offering will be distributed to:
- Helping Children Worldwide
- Domestic Disaster Relief and Recovery
- Community and World Impact Fund
Helping Children Worldwide
Helping Children Worldwide, which supports the Child Rescue Centre and Mercy Hospital in Bo, Sierra Leone, is preparing for significant impact in 2018. The Child Rescue Centre will strengthen 600 children and their families through access to education, health care, family counseling and microfinance opportunities. After years of planning, Mercy Hospital will open its surgical program; including two operating theatres and new patient wards. Mercy Hospital’s outreach will also expand work in the villages around Bo, empowering communities through development of local leadership through training and mentorship.
Domestic Disaster Relief and Recovery
This year our nation experienced some of the largest and most damaging hurricanes ever recorded. These disasters offer Floris UMC and Restoration the opportunity to join ongoing efforts by United Methodist churches nationwide by sending mission teams ready to serve families and individuals rebuilding their homes and communities. In 2018, Floris UMC and Restoration will plan multiple mission teams to disaster stricken areas to help families rebuild. Funds for disaster relief and recovery will support these efforts.
Cornerstones is one of the most well respected non-profits in Northern Virginia because of their ability to impact families and communities and is the premier organization in our community that helps individuals and families suffering from a crisis like homelessness and works with them in a strategic and holistic manner that leads them into self-sufficiency. With vital programs like the Embry Rucker Shelter, the Laurel Learning Center, RestON and Connections for Hope, Cornerstones will continue this transformational work into 2018 and beyond.
Community and World Impact Fund
As we seek to be the center of the community, our pastors often have opportunities to respond to needs brought by members who are dealing with a crisis or by our longtime partners. Formerly known as the Pastor’s Discretionary Fund, the Community and World Impact Fund seeks to serve members and families in crisis and partner organizations that meet vital needs in our community. Through this fund, the pastoral staff are able to minister to our community not just through prayers and presence, but with financial resources that make a difference.