The Christmas Joy Offering - General Assembly Mission Council
A cherished Presbyterian tradition since the 1930s, the Christmas Joy Offering is one of the four special offerings designated by the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.). Because Advent and Christmas shine a light not only on our world’s greatest hope but also on our world’s greatest need, the PC(USA) provides this timely opportunity for congregations to support causes specifically designed to bring Good News of Great Joy to the poor in circumstance or spirit. Alongside the message of promise and fulfillment in Luke’s Gospel, we hear the clear call to God’s people to respond in faith as Christ calls us: “From everyone to whom much has been given, much will be required; and from the one to whom much has been entrusted, even more will be demanded” (Luke 12:48). Undesignated gifts to the Christmas Joy Offering will be distributed equally to the Assistance Program of the Board of Pensions and to support student scholarships at Presbyterian-related racial ethnic schools and colleges.
Fifty percent of the receipts from the Christmas Joy Offering are distributed to the Assistance Program of the Board of Pensions, which provides support to both active and retired church workers and their spouses and families. The other 50 percent supports scholarships at Presbyterian-related racial ethnic school and colleges through the General Assembly Mission Council.
The Christmas Joy Offering is usually received the Sunday before Christmas but may be received anytime during the Advent season. Resources are mailed to congregations in early September.
One Great Hour of Sharing - General Assembly Mission Council
Since 1949, Presbyterians have joined with millions of other Christians through One Great Hour of Sharing to share God’s love with people experiencing need. Our gifts support ministries of disaster response, refugee assistance and resettlement, and community development that help people find safe refuge, start new lives and work together to strengthen their families and communities.
Recognizing that the hope we have in Christ is lived out in our hope for one another, we respond with gifts that help our sisters and brothers around the world find the hope for a brighter future.
The Presbyterian Hunger Program receives 36 percent of undesignated One Great Hour of Sharing gifts, while the Self-Development of People and Presbyterian Disaster Assistance each receive 32 percent.
Pentecost Offering - General Assembly Mission Council
The Pentecost Offering is traditionally received on the day of Pentecost (June 12, 2011). It provides a direct way to meet the needs of children at risk, youth, and young adults. Congregations are encouraged to keep 40 percent of the Offering to support ministry with children at risk in their communities.
The General Assembly’s portion (60 percent) provides leadership development opportunities for Presbyterian youth and young adults and supports children-at-risk programs at the national level. Since 1998, Presbyterians of all ages have raised more than $8 million for these ministries that benefit younger members of God’s family.
Peacemaking Offering - General Assembly Mission Council
RECEIVED BY MOST CHURCHES ON WORLD COMMUNION SUNDAY, OCTOBER 2, 2011
The Presbyterian Peacemaking Program and the Peacemaking Offering celebrated their thirtieth anniversary in 2010. The Offering was organized following the adoption by the General Assembly of Peacemaking: The Believers’ Calling, which called for an emphasis on peacemaking across the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.). This year as your church plans to receive this Offering, remember the peacemakers of years past — in your congregation, presbytery, synod and the denomination as a whole. Make this year a time to renew your commitment to peacemaking as part of your calling as a follower of Christ, who not only taught us the ways of peace but is our peace.
Living Waters for the World
A resource to churches of all denominations, civic organizations and others in mission, enabling them to share clean water with their partners in need.
Bread for the World
Bread for the World is a collective Christian voice urging our nation's decision makers to end hunger at home and abroad. God's grace in Jesus Christ moves us to help our neighbors, whether they live in the next house, the next state, or the next continent.
Confronting the problem of hunger can seem overwhelming. What can one person do? Plenty.
Bread for the World members write personal letters and emails and meet with our members of Congress. Working through our churches, campuses, and other organizations, we engage more people in advocacy.
Each year, Bread for the World invites churches across the country to take up a nationwide Offering of Letters to Congress on an issue that is important to hungry and poor people.
Sabeel Ecumenical Center
Working for Justice, Peace and Reconciliation in Palestine - Israel
Sabeel affirms its commitment to make the gospel relevant ecumenically and spiritually in the lives of the local indigenous Church. Our faith teaches that following in the footsteps of Christ means standing for the oppressed, working for justice, and seeking peace-building opportunities, and it challenges us to empower local Christians. Since a strong civil society and a healthy community are the best supports for a vulnerable population, Sabeel strives to empower the Palestinian community as a whole and to develop the internal strengths needed for participation in building a better world for all
Only by working for a just and durable peace can we provide a sense of security and create ample opportunities for growth and prosperity in an atmosphere void of violence and strife. Although remaining political and organizational obstacles hinder the full implementation of programs, Sabeel continues to develop creative means to surmount these challenges. We seek both to be a refuge for dialogue and to pursue ways of finding answers to ongoing theological questions about the sanctity of life, justice, and peace.
Ten Thousand Villages
The global fair trade movement began with the founding of Ten Thousand Villages more than 60 years ago through the visionary work of Edna Ruth Byler, a pioneering businesswoman. Byler was struck by the overwhelming poverty she witnessed during a trip to Puerto Rico in 1946, where she was moved to take action. The seminal contribution of Byler ignited a global movement to eradicate poverty through market-based solutions.
Byler believed that she could provide sustainable economic opportunities for artisans in developing countries by creating a viable marketplace for their products in North America. She began a grassroots campaign among her family and friends in the United States by selling handcrafted products out of the trunk of her car. Byler made a concerted effort to educate her community about the lives of artisans around the world.
For the next 30 years, Byler worked tirelessly to connect individual entrepreneurs in developing countries with market opportunities in North America. From humble beginnings, Ten Thousand Villages has grown to a global network of social entrepreneurs working to empower and provide economic opportunities to artisans in developing countries.