Chris Herlinger | May 23, 2013
It is nice to be thanked in public. But it is equally nice to be mentioned in a way that elicits helpful understanding.
This is what happened when the Rev. Emily C. Heath, the pastor of the West Dover (Vermont) Congregational Church, penned a terrific piece for The Huffington Post (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/rev-emily-c-heath/five-tips-for-ministry-af_b_3315619.html) on tips for clergy dealing with disasters like the one that befell Oklahoma this week.
Angela Rupchock-Schafer | May 21, 2013
A huge tornado tore through Moore, Oklahoma, yesterday and earlier tornadoes devastated communities across the Central U.S. As I was watching the news last night and today, scanning my Twitter feed for the latest information, all I can think is, “How can I help?”
First off, you can help the most by staying put. Don’t get in the way of first responders by going to the disaster zone. Let the professionals do their jobs. Give a police officer or firefighter in your local community a hug and tell them “thank you” from all of us. The time for putting together teams of colleagues and friends to go rebuild homes will come later.
Amy Porter | May 20, 2013
In Port-au-Prince, Haiti, CWS supports the Haitian Christian Service (Service Chretien d’Haiti), which was founded by CWS in 1954. Working with CWS, SCH helps people in times of disaster and provides vocational training, agricultural assistance and economic opportunities to help people to climb out of poverty.
Two years before the January 12, 2010, earthquake, CWS also started working with churches in Port-au-Prince to become more inclusive to people with disabilities, inspired by a visit from a disabled pastor from Cuba. In Haiti, people with disabilities have been left out of the life of the church and the community, often looked on with suspicion, as though it was their sin that had caused their fate.
Matt Hackworth | May 17, 2013
One of the things I love about CWS is its history, and that so many of my colleagues have been around to witness it. The agency is the kind of place where people have come to spend their whole careers. Just a couple of months ago I helped celebrate the tenures of three colleagues who all have been with CWS for thirty years. That's almost a century of collective experience!
Enter Jack Dunford. A native of the UK, Jack joined CWS thanks to a great intersection of interests: his passion for working with refugees in Southeast Asia, and CWS' mission to provide assistance to those most vulnerable. Initially supported by CWS, Jack helped to found the Thailand-Burma Border Consortium. And like so many others, he's given his career to making a better world alongside CWS.
Bert Marshall | May 15, 2013
“Hi there, how’s everyone doing?” I blurted out in a crowded room full of teenagers who were in the midst of their English class. Without missing a beat, they all responded “Fine! Nice to meet you. Come on in. Welcome.” I asked how long they’d been studying English. The answer: two weeks. Two weeks and they were speaking to a native English speaker with confidence and skill.
We had walked into the Tbilisi Youth House (TYH) in a funky neighborhood in Georgia’s beautiful capital city. Crowding into a hallway on the second floor, we were informed that the several rooms here were classrooms and the students were taking courses in computer skills, languages, cosmetology, accounting, media/journalism, video production and quite a few other subjects. I had discovered the English classroom and invited myself in (the door was open). On an easel were listed some words they were working on. Part way down the list, in sequence, were the words “study,” “play,” and “changed.”
Rachel Pizatella-Haswell | May 14, 2013
Tuesday May 14, denotes the second day of the bipartisan immigration bill S. 744 mark up process, where the Senate Judiciary Committee will be considering amendments concerning employment-based visas. Although I have only been interning with CWS for 5 months, this day encompasses work that has aggregated over years of advocacy efforts.
I began my internship in January 2013, a time when CWS, along with the Interfaith Immigration Coalition – a consortium of national faith based groups advocating for compassionate immigration reform – were meeting with Senators to garner support for legislation that would protect families and lead to a pathway to citizenship for undocumented immigrants.
Mary Catherine Hinds | May 11, 2013
My mom was a member of the Altar Guild at St. Michael Catholic Church in Gastonia, NC. As a young girl I would join her on Saturday mornings to help clean the sanctuary. My job was to scrape out the residual wax from the bottom of the candle holders and place a new candle into the glass. Surrounded by the smells of incense and soap, I felt fulfilled by being able to help.
I believe that God bestows upon every person assets of some kind. No one is created without gifts to share – no matter how old or young. As an employee of CWS for nearly a decade, my job has been to help compassionate citizens of all ages to identify what skills they can offer towards our shared ministry to end hunger and poverty. Now, as a mother, I feel equally called to plant seeds of service in my children so that they bear the fruit of justice and kindness.
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