Outreach Ministries

Community Suppers

2022 dates and updates TBD as restrictions likely are lifted. Due to the coronavirus there was only Community Take Out Suppers on Thursdays for 2021 (2nd and 4th TH of month):  at 5 pm, St. Augustine’s Church. Please call no later than 5 pm the previous day to reserve your meals at 508-684-6270.

A Vineyard tradition during the darkest and coldest months of the year, January through March, churches from around the Island take turns providing community suppers at which all are always welcome, and the food is free. To help when in-person meals resume, please contact Mary Ellen Larsen at 508-693-1103 or email her at melarsen1103@gmail.com The full island schedule is listed below (check with them to see if cancelled by coronavirus limitations).

On Thursday night, a group of parish volunteers served up dinner and friendship in the basement of St. Augustine’s Church in Vineyard Haven. — Photo by Nate Horwitz/MVTimes

FULL WEEKLY SCHEDULE:

Mondays 5:30pm St. Andrews Church 508-627-5300   34 North Summer St., Edgartown (Hosted by United Methodist Church MV & St. Andrews Episcopal Church)

Tuesdays 5:30pm Chilmark Community Church 508-645-3100   9 Menemsha Cross Road, Chilmark

Wednesdays 5:30pm WT Congregational Church 508-693-2842   State Road, West Tisbury

Thursdays 5:00pm Good Shepherd Parish 508-693-0342  56 Franklin Street, VH (Hosted by Good Shepherd Parish & MV Hebrew Center)

Fridays 5:00pm Grace Episcopal Church 508-693-0332  Supper held at the Baptist Church, William Street, Vineyard Haven

Saturdays 5:30pm Trinity Parish House 508-693-4424 In the Campgrounds in Oak Bluffs (Hosted by United Methodist Church MV)

Sundays 12:30pm Federated Church 508-627-4421 45 South Summer Street, Edgartown


Crop Walk 

Fall 2021 date TBD. Thanks to all who participated in the virtual walk this year (2020) and came to the closing ceremony on Sunday, October 18th at St. A’s. Together we helped to raise almost $1500.

 

What is a CROP Hunger Walk? Neighbors walking together to take a stand against hunger in our world. Together we raise awareness and funds for international relief and development, as well as local hunger-fighting.

Crop Walk Martha’s Vineyard takes place on a Sunday, in mid-October beginning at 2:00 pm from St. Augustine’s Church, 56 Franklin Street, Vineyard Haven over to the Camp Ground in Oak Bluffs and back. We encourage our parish families to participate in this annual event.

http://hunger.cwsglobal.org/site/TR/2014FallCROPHungerWalk/TR-Fall2014?fr_id=19802&pg=entry


Red Stocking Fund

The Red Stocking Fund distributes food vouchers for Thanksgiving and again in March, but its big push comes from the winter holidays. Its roots date back to 1938 when Mrs. Harris M. Crist asked her friends to fill six red stockings with gifts for needy children. Today, although the initiative has grown substantially, it is still a grass-roots effort manned by an all-volunteer army of close to 100 people, and supported by hundreds more.

Three annual off-season events benefit the Red Stocking fund -— the Martha’s Vineyard Big Chili Contest in January, the Chowder Contest held each year during Christmas in Edgartown weekend, and the MV Harley Riders Toys for Tots ride. The rest of the donations come from local businesses and individuals. “Kids collect change in the schools or host used-book sales,” says Ms. Susie Wallo, co-chair. “We always get some large checks, but a lot of it is $5, $10. People who come here in the summer or subscribe to the local papers send us checks. Their hearts go out to the cause. It’s just so incredible. People come out of the woodwork.” The money collected is used to purchase clothing and gifts and to supply Island families with holiday meals. In November, the Red Stocking Fund distributes applications through banks, schools and churches. Families in need are placed on a list to receive grocery gift certificates around Thanksgiving, Christmas, and Easter.

Parents of children up to the eighth grade can provide a list of their children’s most needed clothing and hoped-for toys. Everything is kept confidential. Volunteers work from numbered lists, with no names so that it’s anonymous. The toy donations all come from individuals and local businesses and organizations, including the Good Shepherd Parish. The Red Stocking accepts only new toys, games, or books. All kids get a book and some sort of art supplies. “Each package includes several major items of clothing,” says Ms. Wallo, “like a jacket or sweater, in addition to pajamas, socks, underwear, hats and mittens. The last two are generally handmade items donated by local knitters. Each kid also gets a book donated by the Bunch of Grapes Bookstore.” A few days before the distribution date, a crew arrives at St. Augustine’s Church Hall in Vineyard Haven to wrap and sort the gifts. Distribution is held the second Friday of December.

Every year the Red Stocking Fund provides Christmas gifts for 300 to 400 kids in need, from approximately 200 families.

Susie Wallo, far right, is the Red Stocking Fund co-chair. Harley Riders, left to right, David Caseau, Harley Riders treasurer; Mike “Panhead” Fuss; David “Cricket” Willoughby, Riders vice president; Lisa Mathieu; Renei Mathieu, Harley Riders president. —Photo by Michael Dello Russo/MVTimes

For more information contact Susie Wallo at 508-776-6050, or Leslie Frizzell at 508-523-1373. Checks in support of the Red Stocking Fund may be mailed to Susie Wallo, Treasurer, PO Box 600, Edgartown MA 02539.


St. Vincent de Paul Society

“The question which is agitating the world today is a social one. It is a struggle between those who have nothing and those who have too much. It is a violent clash of opulence and poverty which is shaking the ground under our feet. Our duty as Christians is to throw ourselves between these two camps in order to accomplish by love, what justice alone cannot do.”

 

On September 7, we celebrate the feast day of Blessed Frederic Ozanam (1813-1853 ) quoted above, Founder of the Vincent de Paul Society. A scholar during his time, Frederic was inspired by the plight of the poor, seeing service to those in need as the duty of all good Christians. Not content to simply help the poor in their time of need, he sought to radically change the lives of the downtrodden. To help achieve his goal, Frederic founded the Vincent de Paul Society—an active organization today with over one million members in 32 countries.

We do not help to pay rent as we are not a rental subsidy. We can offer Stop and Shop gift cards only. If you need emergency food assistance, contact the Parish Office 508-693-0342; or Bill Bennett, Treasurer 508-560-0511.

All Holy Day of Obligation collections at Good Shepherd Parish go to the St. Vincent de Paul Society.