reaching out into our community and the world beyond
For those folks who seek and find meaning in the words of Micah 6:8, "to do justice, love kindness, and walk humbly with God," we offer many options. Join us in our efforts to feed the hungry, give drink to the thirsty, clothe the naked, and welcome the stranger.
Alternative Christmas Faire
The Alternative Christmas Faire gives holiday shoppers an opportunity to spend their holiday dollars in life saving, world changing ways. In the past, we have gone BIG and partnered with local and international non-profits.
In 2019, we focused on Disciples' organizations: Week of Compassion and Global Ministries. Shoppers were able to "purchase" items such as healthcare for families in India, education for girls in Africa, sponsoring micro-loans for women's businesses, helping to sustain families and communities around the globe, and building wells in villages where clean water is unavailable.
For those who prefer tangible items under their Christmas trees, fair trade coffees, teas, and chocolates were available from Equal Exchange.
For more info on making donations to these organizations, please go directly to their websites or contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Click here for even more alternative gift giving ideas.
Whether you knit, croquet, quilt or just stitch or tie panels of fleece together, your talents are welcome, as we create blankets for the children of Whatcom County. All blankets are donated to Lydia Place, Skookum Kids, and Blue Skies for Children. Please contact the office for more info.
Together with several other local congregations, we participate in CAST, serving coffee, sandwiches and soup to hungry folks at 6:30 p.m. on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays. Current location: Opportunity Council's parking lot, 1111 Cornwall.
Clean Water Projects
It is estimated that 783 million people worldwide do not have access to safe and clean water. So, we at FCC B'ham, keep water jars in our homes to remind us that water is a luxury. Throughout the year, we toss our spare change into our jars. Then, each March, in honor of World Water Day, we send the money to Global Ministries to help provide clean water to those in need around our world. (Water jars are available in the church office.)
We have three raised garden beds available for anyone in need. All unclaimed space is used by the children in our church to plant fruits and vegetables for the Bellingham and Ferndale Food Banks and pumpkins for Whatcom County kids for Halloween. For more info, please contact the church office.
We also partner with Community to Community, providing garden space for families to work together, allowing the children to learn important life skills and the value of caring for the earth, as they grow their own produce. The families are also learning about and working toward food justice. You can learn more about their program and the issue of food sovereignty by contacting them at (360) 738-0893 or C2Cinfo@foodjustice.org.
2nd Sundays, 2 - 3:30 p.m.
First Christian Church welcomes the hungry people of Bellingham to gather together for a warm meal and good fellowship. Volunteers are needed each month to:
Family Promise Hosts
One of every 26 Whatcom County children experienced homelessness for all or part of the 2015-2016 school year. And that's just too many. So, the people of First Christian Church have joined with Interfaith Coalition and many other Whatcom Faith communities to form Family Promise of Whatcom County. Our church will serve as one of the 13 host congregations, with families staying in our building for one week every quarter. We will be offering a safe place to stay, as well as breakfast and dinner. (And supplies so they may pack their lunches to take with them for each afternoon.) Click here to see the list of needs for each host congregation, if you would like to assist.
See Disciples House (below) for info on the Family Promise Day Center.
Fair Trade Coffees, Teas, Chocolates and Other Food Items are available for purchase and order through our church office. Our congregation is part of Equal Exchange, supporting small farmers around the world.
Food Bank Collections
Non-perishable food items can be placed in the shopping cart in the narthex (foyer) and will be delivered to the Bellingham Food Bank on a regular basis.
The people of First Christian Church have found that we can serve God best when we're serving others. And we have fun when we're doing it. As such, we've designated 5th Sundays as our "go and do" Sundays. As we leave worship, we gather together to break bread at a potluck meal. Afterward, we break into teams.
The Away Team goes out into the community to do chores. Either helping our homebound members with projects they cannot do themselves or working onsite for local non-profits (e.g. Amy's Place, Sean Humphrey House, Lydia Place) this small, but mighty, group of worker bees finds that no task can defeat them. They have done major cleaning projects, yard work, and will soon be hanging cabinets on walls. With varying skills and unending determination, we wonder where they will go next.
The Home Team stays on the church grounds and takes on projects that are more suited to either people who prefer to stay put or that just need to be done in this setting. This group makes Blessing Bags to be handed out to our neighbors in need, writes letters for justice, takes on sewing, knitting, and crocheting projects creating hats, scarves, blankets, and now sleeping mats. Our blankets go to Skookum Kids, Blue Skies for Children, and Lydia Place. The hats and scarves are handed out in Joseph's Closet. And the sleeping mats will go to our neighbors in need who find sleeping on the ground to be just a bit too cold and wet.
For more info regarding helping with any of these projects or to request our Away Team's services at your non-profit, please contact us at 360.734.6820 or email@example.com.
Whatcom County is no place to live if you do not have proper shoes or outerwear. Life is difficult enough without the basic clothing for day-to-day living. Sorting through our own closets and gathering donations from the community, we have opened this clothes closet to the community. Open 2nd Sundays, 2 - 3:30 p.m., during the Community Meal, (or other times by appointment) all items are free. Please contact the church office to make donations. All donations must be clean and gently used.
There are few things in life more miserable than being cold, homeless, and having wet, dirty socks. Help us protect the cold, unhappy feet of Whatcom County by donating new, comfy socks to our Socks on the Street ministry.
Finding Safe Space
Disciples House/Family Promise Day Center
In 2006, one of our church members found a house that was slated for demolition. It took many $$$ and phone calls, untold visits to City Hall, and countless donated hours from local volunteers, but the house was relocated onto our church property and transformed into a home.
Disciples House served as a home, offering safe harbor for Whatcom County families as they work with Opportunity Council to find their "forever homes," for twelve years. Then, during the winter of 2017-18 another transition began, as it was transformed into the Day Center for Family Promise.