Youth from Congregational Church of Austin, University Christian Church and University Baptist Church on a mission trip.
OPPORTUNITIES FOR SERVICE
Our church’s outreach ministry includes both face-to-face direct care to people in need and justice advocacy. We have a long history of working with homeless youth and young adults, providing them with food, shelter, and services, and advocating for affordable housing and other supportive services. We also advocate for living wages, just immigration and refugee policies, and equal rights for everyone regardless of race, gender, religion, or sexual orientation. Because of our commitment to direct service and advocacy, members of our church are familiar with shelters and dining rooms, City Hall and the State Capitol. The following is a list of our outreach ministries.
University Area Micah 6
We are an active member of the University Area Micah 6 Ministry, through which the University area churches serve the needs of low-income and homeless people. Our church members serve on the Micah 6 Board of Directors, and in the Micah 6 food pantry and Sunday Drop-In for homeless youth and young adults.
Freeze Night Cold Weather Shelter
When the temperature drops to freezing or below, we open our doors to homeless youth and young adults, and we provide them with an evening meal, a safe place to sleep, and a morning meal. Trained volunteers from our church work with staff from LifeWorks Street Outreach to maintain a safe environment during shelter evenings.
Christmas Open Door Meal
On Christmas Day, we celebrate Jesus’ birth with a brief communion service in our sanctuary, and then open our doors to anyone who would like a Christmas meal of ham, turkey, stuffing, vegetables, and desserts. We typically serve 65 to 80 people on Christmas day.
Street Youth Outreach Ministry
Our church provides space throughout the week for Street Youth Outreach Ministry to serve meals, lead Bible Studies, do job-search counseling, and provide basic care and support to homeless youth.
“Standing With Our Muslim Neighbors”
In response to the rise of Islamophobia in our nation, our church is participating in the Interfaith Action for Human Rights “Banner Project” by hanging a banner that reads, “We Stand With Our Muslim Neighbors,” and by developing closer relationships with Austin’s Muslim Community.
We are a member of Austin Interfaith, a faith-based political organization affiliated with the Industrial Areas Foundation. Through Austin Interfaith, local religious, labor, and community organizations organize to promote equity and justice on a host of issues in Austin.
Equal Justice Center
We support the Equal Justice Center, which provides legal services to low-wage workers and immigrants, supports workers seeking to defend their workplace rights and recover stolen wages, and advocates for just US immigration policies. Our church hosts several Equal Justice Center educational events every year.
We are members of Texas Impact, a faith-based legislative advocacy organization that supports justice and sound environmental stewardship policies on the state level.
Austin Sanctuary Network
The Austin Sanctuary Network is a coalition of faith communities, immigrants and other community members of civil society in and around Austin. ASN supports and protects undocumented asylum seekers and immigrants, and advocates for just immigration policies.
We support Equal Exchange, an organization that purchases coffee, cocoa, and tea directly from coops around the world at fair and just prices, and then sells it directly to consumers. We sell Equal Exchange products in church after worship on many Sundays.
The Care Communities
We support The Care Communities, an organization that provides basic care and assistance to people living with AIDS and other terminal diseases. Our church has a “care team” that provides this support to a Care Communities client, and members of our church ride on the Care Communities Cycling Team to raise money for the organization in the Hill Country Ride for AIDS.
United Church of Christ Child Sponsorship
We participate in the United Church of Christ Global Ministry’s Child Sponsorship Program by sponsoring a student who attends the Rawdat El Zuhar school in East Jerusalem.
Back Bay Mission, Biloxi Mississippi
We support Back Bay Mission, a leader in economic development, affordable housing construction, and hands-on Christian work camp ministry on Mississippi’s Gulf Coast. We provide annual financial support to Back Bay Mission, and we have sent member to participate in work projects.
We support Interfaith Action of Central Texas, an interfaith organization that cultivates peace and respect through interfaith dialogue, service and celebration.
Calvert Social Investment Fund
We invest in the Calvert Social Investment Fund, a micro-lending agency that provides low-interest credit to people in the United States and the developing world.
Each January a group travels from our church, along with groups from UCC churches in Ohio, Wisconsin, and Pennsylvania, to Alegria, El Salvador, to work with the people there. They take medical and school supplies, work with the people there on various building projects for the community, and learn about the political and economic issues affecting them.