Church on the Go
When 800 church members leave their church pews to have Church Without Walls, the community takes notice. In this case, it was St. Peter’s United Methodist Church in Katy, Texas, serving their neighbors in the Katy and Brookshire area for the third such mega-outing in lieu of their regular worship services. The congregation fanned out to participate in 24 service projects for a variety of organizations and individuals.
At Katy Manor Apartments, children, students and parents provided a worship service for the residents’ children followed by crafts, a water slide and a cookout. Choir members took their gift of music to several area retirement and nursing homes, sharing favorite hymns and gospel music with the residents. Construction and repair projects took place at facilities such as Manna House in Brookshire, the Krause Center, Halter Inc., and the Pregnancy Help Center.
One of the most visible projects occurred in the church parking lot on Kingsland Blvd. where St. Peter’s members constructed enough walls for Habitat for Humanity to build one home.
People of every age and ability found projects they could do at the church. Teams filled bags of rice and beans for a food pantry, made prayer quilts, assembled cleaning buckets for disaster relief and sewing kits, and prepared bags of needed supplies for the homeless.
Carolyn Campbell headed up the group that volunteered at Christ Clinic, which serves the uninsured and those without government assistance. “Our team met at Christ Clinic where we proceeded to get down on our hands and knees—not to pray—but to scrub the carpet,” she said. “Everyone worked so diligently to try to bring it up to par for all the staff and patients who use the facility. We felt it was the least we could do for an organization that is such a blessing to those in need.”
Bill Land, coordinator of Mission Ministries, said this church-wide event has had a profound effect on church members’ passion for mission work in other areas. “Since we began Church Without Walls, mission work at St. Peter’s has taken off. The compassion that we show, not only for the 24 different service projects in our community but also around the world, has been very heart-warming and satisfying for the whole Missions Team,” he said.
Church Without Walls has also allowed St. Peter’s to establish ongoing connections with other community organizations. “Many of the projects returned from past years,” Bill adds, “which speaks to the fact that we really are building relationships with those in our community who not only need but truly appreciate our assistance. Church Without Walls is a wonderful way for all of us here at St. Peter’s to go into the world, just like Jesus did, and connect the world with God’s love.”
In addition to Church Without Walls, St. Peter’s has a monthly mission focus, collects food for a food pantry on the first Sunday of each month, sponsors a group of students and adults who do home repairs through U.M. ARMY and is involved in a variety of international missions in countries such as Jamaica, Ecuador, Honduras and Guatemala.