To the editor:
Hello, Perry community. I am Rev. Andrea Brownlee, pastor of the First Christian Church, and I currently serve as the president of the Perry Ministerial Association (PMA).
The PMA is made up of primarily Mainline Churches in the Perry community and was created to be a collective spiritual and religious voice in the community many years ago. The PMA offers community worship opportunities throughout the year and helps community members in need of financial assistance for utilities, food, rent and clothing.
We work with many organizations in the Perry community to help meet as many requests for assistance as we are able. One way we do this is through the Good Samaritan Fund. The fund operates with the donations of churches, organizations and individuals who give generously throughout the year. Occasionally, we receive grants to help with the work we do in order to serve the community to the best of our ability.
I have served as president of the PMA for two years, and I have seen first hand that the congregations and ministers who are part of the PMA take seriously Jesus’ words in Matthew 25: “Just as you did it to one of the least of these who are members of my family, you did it to me.”
We serve the community better together than we ever could alone.
One glance at the calendar, and you know that we are quickly entering the time of year when everyone is asking for “help so they can help,” and the PMA is no different. We cannot serve the community without the help of the community.
There is always an increase in requests for assistance through the winter months. The Good Samaritan Fund is used the most between December and February to help keep families in homes and those homes warm. Because we see an increase in need, we strive to be diligent in how the needs are met so that we can help as many people as possible.
This is not just another request to “help so we can help” but rather a call to the community of Perry, church goers and non-church goers alike, to assist in helping those in need in your community get back on their feet.
I invite you to consider giving to the Good Samaritan Fund this year, where 100 percent of your donation stays in the community of Perry. There are several ways to give to the PMA and the Good Samaritan Fund. One way is to send your donation to Perry Ministerial Association, P.O. Box 156, Perry, IA 50220.
You may also drop off or mail donations to one of the following churches: First Christian Church, First Presbyterian Church, Mount Olivet Lutheran Church, St. Patrick’s Catholic Church, St. Martin’s Episcopal Church or First United Methodist Church, all located in Perry.
Finally, you are invited to join the PMA for any of our community worship services throughout the year, where offerings are received at all services except for the Blue Christmas and Good Friday services.
The next opportunity to join in community worship is Wednesday, Nov. 27 at 7 p.m. when the PMA will hold a Thanksgiving Eve service at First Christian Church at 1224 Lucinda St. This worship service follows the Before the Turkey Soup Supper in the same location from 5-7 p.m.
Other worship opportunities throughout the year include the Blue Christmas service Dec. 22 at 7 p.m. held at First Presbyterian Church (no offering collected), Tuesday Lenten Worships and Lunches March 3-31, 2020. The offering collected at these services benefits the Good Samaritan Fund. The locations for these services will be published when they are available.
It is my privilege to serve as the president of the Perry Ministerial Association and a member of the clergy of this community. I hope you will consider giving to the Good Samaritan Fund so it might continue to help the Perry community! Blessing and peace in this season of giving!
Rev. Andrea Brownlee