Through our Mission & Outreach ministry we growth in faith through our service to others. This ministry focuses on external contributions to God’s kingdom by being his heart and hands in our community. Mission & Outreach includes:
Samaritan's Purse - Operation Christmas Child
It’s time to fill shoeboxes full of gifts to bless boys and girls in need around the world while introducing them to Jesus Christ!
This year, we will provide pre-printed shoeboxes for your convenience. Please note: toothpaste and candy are no longer allowed in shoebox gifts due to customs regulations.
Other Gifts: Fill with other fun toys, hygiene items, and school supplies. Visit samaritanspurse.org/occ for gift suggestions and items not to be included.
Pray: Most importantly, pray for the child who will receive your gift. Include a personal note and photo.
Include $9 Donation: A donation of $9 is critical to cover shipping and other project costs. Please enclose a check in the box, or give online through Follow Your Box and discover the destination of your shoebox.
DROP OFF: Please return filled boxes to the church office or Fellowship Hall by Sunday, November 12.
For additional information, please contact Sharon Hayes.
Homeless Awareness Month
November is homeless awareness month. Contra Costa county will join the national effort to increase awareness and promote solutions to ending homelessness. Last year over 6,100 homeless men, women and children in Contra Costa County used homeless services. We each play a part in ending homelessness in our community. Please review the attached materials for opportunities to participate in education, advocacy and service to end homelessness in our community and look for further information on how we may support as a Congregation.
Mexico Mission Trip
Our yearly mission trip to Baja, California to support immigrant farmworkers who work and live in under supported villages. Originally designed as a youth group event, our Mexico Mission trip has grown to be an outreach for all generations. For more information, please contact the church office and ask for the Council Ministry leader, Sharon Hayes, or trip leader, Fred Vogelgesang.
Bread of Life
Our community in Antioch faces many challenges, one of which is the increasing number of homeless and in need of support. In partnership with the Bread of Life Ministries, our congregation provides monthly meals to the homeless. For more information, please contact the church office and ask for the Council Ministry leader, Sharon Hayes, or Bread of Life Coordinator, Bobbi Crossland.
We are blessed as a faith community to be able to work with the Antioch School District to bring the word of God directly to children through “Kid’s Club”. Kid’s Club is a nationwide organization that works with local ministries to provide weekly Christian-based after-school programing. We are proud to have been the first local Church to reach out and bring this program to our community. After three years, the program is going strong and we continue to look for ways to be active in the lives of our children throughout our community. For more information, please contact the church office and ask for the Children’s Ministry Director, Eileen Blue or Council Ministry leader, Sharon Hayes.
Pastor Jerry Schmalenberger, old preacher, retired Seminary President, vagabond missionary, and sometimes professor, not perfect but forgiven. A graduate of Wittenberg University and Hamma School of Theology Dr. Schmalenberger served as a parish pastor for 29 years before taking the presidency of Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary in Berkeley, California, where he was also Professor of Parish Ministry. Now retired from that position, he is a Global Mission Volunteer with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.
Our Global Missionary has taught in the countries of: Liberia, Jamaica, Bavaria, Argentina, Uruguay, Suriname, Sumatra, Hong Kong and The People's Republic of China. He continues to travel to Hong Kong and Asia where he works with future pastors, missionaries and Professors of newly established theological seminaries.
The author of twenty-two books on the Christian faith and pastoral ministry our "Pastor Jerry", as we call him, often preaches and teaches at St. John's enriching our worship by sharing his experiences about the world wide Lutheran family. He and his wife Carol, who is the ELCA's Region 2 Archivist, reside in the Pittsburg, California,marina.
He is a frequent contributor to The Lutheran magazine, Partners and Theology and Life theological journals His latest published books include: The Miracles of Jesus and Their Flip Side, These Will Preach, Preparation for Discipleship, The Preacher's Edge, Plane Thoughts on Parish Ministry, The Parables of Jesus and Their Flip Side, Dear Friends and Family and The Preacher's Lectionary Workbook, Series A, series B and Series C. All are published by CSS publishing of Lima Ohio and are also available from Amazon.com and Barns and Noble.